The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between VO2max and acute resistance exercise performance and the acute metabolic effects of exercise sequencing. Seventeen resistance-trained men were tested for VO2max and 1 repetition maximum (1RM) strength. Subjects were randomly assigned to either a group that performed the squat first in sequence followed by the bench press (S; n = 8) or a group that performed the bench press first followed by the squat (BP; n = 9). Each group performed 3 protocols (using 1-, 2-, or 3-minute rest intervals [RIs] between sets in random order) consisting of 5 sets of each exercise with 75% of their 1RM for up to 10 repetitions while oxygen consumption was measured. Total repetitions completed were highest with 3-minute RI and lowest with 1-minute RI. Mean VO2 was significantly highest with 1-minute RI and lowest using 3-minute RI. Analysis of each exercise revealed a tendency (p = 0.07) for mean bench press VO2 to be higher when it was performed after the squat using 1- and 2-minute RIs. VO2max was significantly negatively correlated to 1RM bench press and squat (r = -0.79 and -0.60, respectively) and was significantly correlated to squat repetitions (r = 0.43-0.57) but did not correlate to bench press performance. It seems that VO2max is related to lower-body resistance exercise performance when short RIs are used, and the metabolic response to the bench press is augmented when it follows the squat in sequence using short RIs.