A combination of BCAAs, citrulline and arginine improves the results during interval training. This is the conclusion of study by Taiwanese sports scientists, affiliated with Chinese Culture University in Taipei, which will be published in Nutrients. The researchers experimented with young swimmers. And no, this study was not financed by the supplement industry.
StudyThe researchers had 16 teenage swimmers do an interval training in the water on two occasions. The interval workout consisted of 8 laps of 50 meters. Between the jobs the subjects rested for 3 minutes.
Two hours before the interval training, all subjects received the same breakfast. An hour before the training they also received a placebo on one occasion, or amino acids on the other occasion. An imaginary test subject of 85 kilos was given 7.2 grams of BCAAs, 4.2 grams of arginine and 4.2 grams of citrulline. The study was not sponsored by a manufacturer of supplements, but funded by the Taiwanese government.
ResultsSupplementation shortened the times in which the subjects could finish their laps with 0.44 seconds on average.
The supplementation increased the BCAAs:tryptophan raio in the blood. According to a classical theory, this shift inhibits fatigue. That was probably also the case here, the researchers suspect: although the swimmers swam faster because of the supplementation, they were just as tired afterwards as after the training in the placebo condition.
Conclusion"The present results showed that BCAA, arginine, and citrulline allowed young participants to swim faster in a 8 x 50 m high-intensity interval protocol while feeling the same level of effort", conclude the researchers. "Future research may focus on the modifications in training load to utilize the enhanced physiological and psychological mechanisms associated with these supplements."