Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2019) 18, 636 - 644

Research article
Two Weeks of Interval Training Enhances Fat Oxidation during Exercise in Obese Adults with Prediabetes
Julian M. Gaitán1, Natalie Z.M. Eichner1, Nicole M. Gilbertson1, Emily M. Heiston1, Arthur Weltman1,2, Steven K. Malin1,2,3, 
Author Information
1 Department of Kinesiology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA
2 Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA
3 Robert M. Berne Cardiovascular Research Center, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA

Steven K. Malin
✉ PhD Department of Kinesiology, 225A Memorial Gymnasium, Charlottesville, VA, USA
Publish Date
Received: 28-05-2019
Accepted: 02-08-2019
Published (online): 19-11-2019
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Prediabetes is associated with impaired oxidative capacity and altered substrate utilization during exercise. The effects of continuous (CONT) versus interval (INT) exercise training on fat oxidation during an acute exercise bout at the same absolute and relative intensities are unknown in this population. Obese females/males (n = 17, n = 5) with prediabetes (BMI 32.2 ± 1.2 kg·m-2; age 62.8 ± 1.6 y; fasting glucose 103.4 ± 1.6 mg·dL-1; 2-hour glucose 153.7 ± 7.1 mg·dL-1; VO2peak 19.9 ± 1.0 mL·kg-1·min-1) were screened with a 75g OGTT. Subjects completed a peak oxygen consumption test and a submaximal exercise substrate utilization test consisting of 5min stages at absolute (30W) and relative (70%HRpeak) intensities before and after randomization to 12 sessions (60min each) of CONT (70% HRpeak) or INT (alternating 3min 90% HRpeak, 3min 50% HRpeak) over a two-week period. Body mass decreased and VO2peak increased more after INT than CONT (INT: -0.6 ± 0.2 kg, CONT: -0.1 ± 0.2 kg; p = 0.04; INT: 1.9 ± 0.6 mL/kg/min, CONT: 0.1 ± 0.6 mL·kg-1·min-1; p = 0.04). Training increased fat oxidation by 0.7 ± 0.2 mL·kg-1·min-1 during the absolute intensity test (p < 0.001), independent of intensity. During the relative intensity test, fat oxidation increased more after INT than CONT (INT: 1.3 ± 0.4 mL·kg-1·min-1, CONT: 0.3 ± 0.3 mL·kg-1·min-1; p = 0.03), with no difference in exercise energy expenditure between groups. Enhanced fat oxidation during the relative test was correlated with increased VO2peak (r = 0.53 p = 0.01). High intensity INT training enhances fat oxidation during the same relative intensity exercise in people with prediabetes.

Key words: Exercise training, oxidative metabolism, substrate utilization, exercise intensity, hyperglycemia

           Key Points
  • Interval exercise training augments fat oxidation in adults with prediabetes
  • Elevated exercise fat oxidation correlates with improved aerobic fitness
  • Fat oxidation changes were not correlated with glucose regulation
  • Enhanced fat oxidation and fitness occur before clinically significant weight loss
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