Editor's Notes

Macy Bynum, Annika M. Pschorr, Taylor Carrico, and Morgan Maleske were recipient of an ORCA Travel Grant to present this research at the American College of Sports Medicine Central States 2024 Annual Meeting, which took place March 7-8, 2024.


Citrulline malate (CM) is suggested to improve performance and post-exercise recovery. There is limited research on the effect of CM on short duration, high-intensity aerobic exercise with ambiguous results. The effects of acute CM supplementation on combined aerobic/anaerobic performance in novice CrossFit® participants is unknown. PURPOSE: To examine the effects of acute CM vs. placebo (PL) supplementation on multiple-bout, high- intensity aerobic performance in novice Nancy CrossFit® participants. METHODS: Eight recreationally trained males (X±SD; age = 20.8 ± 2.7 yrs, height = 180.0 ± 6.1 cm, body fat 6.9 ± 2.3%, VO2max = 52.2 ± 4.8 ml/kg/min, 1RM squat = 59.9 ± 16.3 kg, MET.min = 701.1 ± 230.4) were randomized in a double-blind, crossover design. Participants completed two Nancy workouts separated by a 7-day washout period. In each session, participants consumed 4 oz of orange juice with either 8 g of CM or PL. After 1 hr, participants completed the Nancy (5 bouts of a 400-meter run on a treadmill followed by 15 overhead squats with a 20 kg barbell), and a 20-min recovery. Speed, heart rate reserve (HRR), rate of perceived exertion (RPE), blood pressure (BP), and lactate (LA) were measured. Separate 2x5 repeated measures ANOVAs assessed differences in speed, HRR, and RPE between conditions and bouts. A 2x6 repeated measures ANOVA assessed differences in LA between conditions at the following timepoints: pre-exercise and 2, 5, 10, 15, and 20 min post exercise. A 2x3 repeated measures ANOVA assessed the influence of CM on systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) blood pressure before, immediately after, and 20 min after exercise. To assess if a learning effect was present, speed between trials 1 and 2 were compared. RESULTS: For LA, a 2-way interaction was noted (p = .03, = .29), indicating at 10 min (9.98 ± 2.14 vs. 11.10 ± 1.97 mmol/L, p = .04, g = .84) and 20 min (6.04 ± 1.92 vs. 7.30 ± 2.25 mmol/L, p = .01, g = 1.14) LA was lower for PL as compared to CM. All other timepoints were not different between conditions (p = .11 - 0.81, g = .08 - .62). RPE, HRR, speed, SBP, and DBP were not different between conditions (p > .05, < .001 - .19). In addition, a learning effect was not found between trials 1 and 2 (p = .76, = .01). CONCLUSION: These data suggest that acute CM supplementation 1 hr before the Nancy did not improve aerobic performance.



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