The purpose of this study was to investigate the acute responses of both stress and fluid regulatory hormones to a single bout of resistance exercise in both trained and untrained men. Seven competitive power lifters (PL) and 12 untrained subjects (UT) performed one set of the leg press exercise to exhaustion at 80% of their respective one-repetition maximum. Blood samples were obtained twice prior to exercise (at P1 and P2), immediately postexercise (IP), and at 5 minutes postexercise (5PE). Compared to P1 and P2, plasma epinephrine, norepinephrine, dopamine, atrial peptide, osmolality, and blood lactic acid increased significantly (p < or = 0.05) at IP. Plasma epinephrine, norepinephrine, atrial peptide, and blood lactic acid concentrations remained elevated at 5PE compared to P1 and P2. Plasma renin activity and angiotensin II were significantly elevated at 5PE compared to P1, P2, and IP, and this increase was significantly greater in PL compared to UT at 5PE. These data indicate that an acute bout of resistance exercise dramatically affects secretion of stress and fluid regulatory hormones.