Effect of ambient temperature on cardiovascular drift and maximal oxygen uptake

Andrew J Lafrenz, Jonathan E Wingo, Matthew S Ganio, Kirk J Cureton
Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 2008, 40 (6): 1065-71

PURPOSE: This study tested the hypothesis that the magnitude of cardiovascular (CV) drift and decrease in maximal oxygen uptake (V[spacing dot above]O2max) would be greater at 35 degrees C than at 22 degrees C.

METHODS: The increase in HR and decrease in stroke volume (SV) between 15 and 45 min of cycling at 59.2 +/- 1.9% V[spacing dot above]O2max (CV drift) was measured in hot (HEAT, 35 degrees C) and cool (COOL, 22 degrees C) ambient temperatures in 10 endurance-trained men (age = 23 +/- 3 yr, V[spacing dot above]O2max = 64.7 +/- 8.7 V[spacing dot above]O2max was measured immediately after the 45 min of cycling and again under both ambient temperature conditions on separate days after 15 min of cycling. This design permitted assessment of V[spacing dot above]O2max between the same time points that CV drift occurred. Fluid to replace sweat losses was provided during all trials.

RESULTS: CV drift and the associated decrease in V[spacing dot above]O2max was greater (P < 0.05) in HEAT versus COOL. HR increased 11% (P < 0.05), SV decreased 11% (P < 0.05), and V[spacing dot above]O2max fell 15% (P < 0.05) between 15 and 45 min in HEAT, whereas HR and SV changed less (+2% and -2% for HR and SV, respectively, P < 0.05), and there was no significant decrease in V[spacing dot above]O2max (5%, P > 0.05) between 15 and 45 min in COOL.

CONCLUSION: These data demonstrate the magnitude of CV drift during prolonged submaximal exercise, and the accompanying decrease in V[spacing dot above]O2max measured immediately thereafter is greater in a hot than in a cool environment.

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