GH responses to a near-maximal exercise training session on-the-field in cyclists

C. L. Lafortuna, P. G. Marinone, S. Ottolini, A. Sartorio

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Acute plasma GH response to prolonged (1 h) near-maximal exercise was studied in 7 elite cyclists (6 males, 1 female; mean age±SE: 24.9±1.4 yr) during a routine training session on an uphill track (length: 22.0 km, average slope: 4.39%) and during a recovery (REC) period of 60 min from the end of exercise. The training session entailed a warming-up (WARM) phase of about 20 min at 63% of individual maximal heart rate (HRmax) followed by a high intensity exercise (HIE) phase of about 60 min at 90-92% of HRmax. GH resting values averaged 0.2±0.06 ng/ml; average GH concentration attained a maximal value (21.5±3.3 ng/ml, range: 11.0-38.2 ng/ml) between 20 and 40 min of HIE and significantly decreased thereafter (p=0.01), although exercise intensity was unchanged in the following period (p=0.14). After WARM, GH concentrations were significantly lower than peak values (p=0.05). During REC, GH levels steadily decreased, attaining a value of 2.6±0.8 ng/ml 60 min after the end of exercise. It was concluded that during prolonged and sustained exercise on-the-field in cyclists, GH value determined at the end of the bout may not correspond to the maximal value, which can be observed after 20 to 40 min of near-maximal exercise.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Endocrinological Investigation
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2003


  • Elite cyclists
  • Exercise
  • GH

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology


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