RESEARCH: studies I shared this week: 3-9 October 2022

All of the studies I've shared (~500 studies) are available on the RESOURCES PAGE.

SUPPLEMENT: The ergogenic effect of acute carnosine and anserine supplementation


  1. Three studies were conducted to establish dosing and timing guidelines concerning carnosine and anserine intake and to unravel the mechanism underlying the ergogenic effects.
  2. Study A showed a 3% peak power and 4.5% peak torque improvement on repeated cycling sprint ability test (RSA) and maximal voluntary isometric contractions (MVC), with 30−1 carnosine + anserine ingestion 60 minutes before the performance yielding the best results.
  3. Acute ingestion of 30−1 of both carnosine and anserine, 60 minutes before a high intensity exercise, can potentially improve performance, such as short cycling sprints or maximal muscle contractions.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - carnosine and anserine appear to be ergogenic supplements for high intensity exercise.

TRAINING: Energy expenditure with indoor exercise machines


  1. Subjects underwent a 4-week habituation period to become familiar with the RPE scale and exercise on an Airdyne, a cross-country skiing simulator, a cycle ergometer, a rowing ergometer, a stair stepper, and a treadmill.
  2. The exercise test comprised 3 stages of 5 minutes at self-selected work rates corresponding to RPE values of 11 (fairly light), 13 (somewhat hard), and 15 (hard). Oxygen consumption, from which the rate of energy expenditure was calculated, was measured during the last minute of each 5-minute exercise stage.
  3. The treadmill induced higher rates of energy expenditure for fixed RPE values than all other exercise machines. The cross-country skiing simulator, rowing ergometer, and stair stepper induced higher rates of energy expenditure than the Airdyne and cycle ergometer.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - using the treadmill appears to be the most demanding indoor exercise amongst the modalities measured.

EQUIPMENT: Advancements in running shoe technology and their effects on running economy and performance


  1. The defining features of technologically advanced shoes are a stiff plate embedded within the midsole, curved plate and midsole geometry, and lightweight, resilient, high-energy returning foam that – in combination – enhance running performance.
  2. Since the launch of the first commercially available super shoe, all world records from the 5 km to the marathon have been broken by athletes wearing super shoes or super spikes, with a similar trend observed in middle-distance running.
  3. The improvements in super shoes are around 4% for running economy and 2% for performance, and speculatively around 1% to 1.5% for super spikes.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - if you're aiming to achieve your top performance on the road or track then must consider using super shoes.

EQUIPMENT: Comparison of in-shoe plantar loading forces between minimalist and maximalist cushion running shoes


  1. The purpose of this study was to compare in-shoe plantar loading parameters between MIN and MAX running footwear.
  2. On average, the following decreases were seen in the maximalist shoe in the total foot when compared to the minimalist shoe: maximum mean pressure (MMP) 11.6%, peak pressure (PP) 30.6%, pressure time integral (PTI) 29.8%.
  3. Maximalist shoes may be considered when the aim is to reduce forces and pressures under the foot during running activities.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - maximalist shoes may be useful when you want to reduce the load under the foot. Note, however, that it is likely that this load is transferred somewhere else (perhaps the knees) so it is important to consider that when choosing shoes.

In the Twitter discussion there was some great input about considering all these different loads and also shoe rotations.

INTERVALS: Exercise Dose Equalization in High-Intensity Interval Training


  1. The present scoping review aims to identify in the literature the evidence for protocol equalization and the soundness of methods used for it.
  2. No clear consensus for protocol equalization appears to have evolved over recent years. Prominent equalization methods consider the exercise dose (i.e., energy expenditure/production or total volume) in absolute values without considering the nonlinear nature of its relationship with duration.
  3. Exercises resulting from these methods induced maximal exertion in HIIT but low exertion in MICT.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - be mindful when looking at studies that compare different training doses, and when comparing across studies, as it is possible direct comparisons cannot be made.

When I shared this study the conversation around the topic became far reaching and looked into different methods of measuring efforts (NIRS and HR in particular). I learnt a lot from it and will be reading more and listening to some of the recommended podcasts to understand NIRS more. You can find the thread here.

PROTEIN: Synergistic Effect of Increased Total Protein Intake and Strength Training on Muscle Strength


  1. We aimed to assess the detailed dose-response relationship between protein supplementation and muscle strength, with and without resistance training.
  2. Muscle strength increase was significantly augmented only with resistance training and was not augmented if resistance training was absent.
  3. Concurrent use of resistance training is essential for protein supplementation to improve muscle strength. This study indicates that 1.5 g/kg BW/d may be the most appropriate amount of total protein intake for maintaining and augmenting muscle strength along with resistance training.

PRACTICAL TAKEAWAY - while protein intake is critical to support muscle growth and strength, it is important to remember that the stimulus is the training itself and that must come first.

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