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Postexercise carbohydrate-protein supplementation improves subsequent exercise performance and intracellular signaling for protein synthesis.

J Strength Cond Res. 2011 May;25(5):1210-24

Ferguson-Stegall L, McCleave EL, Ding Z, Doerner PG 3rd, Wang B, Liao YH, Kammer L, Liu Y, Hwang J, Dessard BM, Ivy JL.

Exercise Physiology and Metabolism Laboratory, Department of Kinesiology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas, USA.

Postexercise carbohydrate-protein (CHO + PRO) supplementation has been proposed to improve recovery and subsequent endurance performance compared to CHO supplementation. This study compared the effects of a CHO + PRO supplement in the form of chocolate milk (CM), isocaloric CHO, and placebo (PLA) on recovery and subsequent exercise performance. Ten cyclists performed 3 trials, cycling 1.5 hours at 70% VO2max plus 10 minutes of intervals. They ingested supplements immediately postexercise and 2 hours into a 4-hour recovery. Biopsies were performed at recovery minutes 0, 45, and 240 (R0, R45, REnd). Postrecovery, subjects performed a 40-km time trial (TT). The TT time was faster in CM than in CHO and in PLA (79.43 ± 2.11 vs. 85.74 ± 3.44 and 86.92 ± 3.28 minutes, p > 0.05). Muscle glycogen resynthesis was higher in CM and in CHO than in PLA (23.58 and 30.58 vs. 7.05 (mol·g)¹ wet weight, p >0.05). The mammalian target of rapamycin phosphorylation was greater at R45 in CM than in CHO or in PLA (174.4 ± 36.3 vs. 131.3 ± 28.1 and 73.7 ± 7.8% standard, p ? 0.05) and at REnd in CM than in PLA (94.5 ± 9.9 vs. 69.1 ± 3.8%, p > 0.05). rpS6 phosphorylation was greater in CM than in PLA at R45 (41.0 ± 8.3 vs. 15.3 ± 2.9%, p ? 0.05) and REnd (16.8 ± 2.8 vs. 8.4 ± 1.9%, p ? 0.05). FOXO3A phosphorylation was greater at R45 in CM and in CHO than in PLA (84.7 ± 6.7 and 85.4 ± 4.7 vs. 69.2 ± 5.5%, p ? 0.05). These results indicate that postexercise CM supplementation can improve subsequent exercise performance and provide a greater intracellular signaling stimulus for PRO synthesis compared to CHO and placebo.

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