Sodium bicarbonate and high-intensity-cycling capacity: variability in responses

Saunders, B., Sale, C. ORCID: 0000-0002-5816-4169, Harris, R.C. and Sunderland, C. ORCID: 0000-0001-7484-1345, 2014. Sodium bicarbonate and high-intensity-cycling capacity: variability in responses. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 9 (4), pp. 627-632. ISSN 1555-0265

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Purpose: The aim of this study was to determine whether gastrointestinal (GI) distress affects the ergogenicity of sodium bicarbonate and whether the degree of alkalaemia or other metabolic responses are different between individuals who improve exercise capacity and those who do not. Methods: Twenty-one males completed two cycling capacity tests at 110% of maximum power output. Participants were supplemented with 0.3 g∙kg-1BM of either placebo (maltodextrin) or sodium bicarbonate (SB). Blood pH, bicarbonate, base excess and lactate were determined at baseline, pre-exercise, immediately post-exercise and 5 minutes post-exercise. Results: SB supplementation did not significantly increase total work done (TWD) (P = 0.16, 46.8 ± 9.1 vs. 45.6 ± 8.4 kJ, d = 0.14), although magnitude based inferences suggested a 63% likelihood of a positive effect. When data were analysed without four participants who experienced GI discomfort, TWD (P = 0.01) was significantly improved with SB. Immediately post-exercise blood lactate was higher in SB for the individuals who improved but not for those who didn’t. There were also differences in the pre to post-exercise change in blood pH, bicarbonate and base excess between individuals who improved and individuals who did not. Conclusions: SB improved high intensity cycling capacity, but only with the exclusion of participants experiencing GI discomfort. Differences in blood responses suggest that sodium bicarbonate may not be beneficial to all individuals. Magnitude based inferences suggested that the exercise effects are unlikely to be negative; therefore individuals should determine whether they respond well to sodium bicarbonate supplementation prior to competition.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
Creators: Saunders, B., Sale, C., Harris, R.C. and Sunderland, C.
Publisher: Human Kinetic Journals
Place of Publication: Champaign, IL
Date: July 2014
Volume: 9
Number: 4
ISSN: 1555-0265
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: EPrints Services
Date Added: 09 Oct 2015 10:03
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 13:17

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