Purpose: To investigate whether oxygen-uptake ([Formula: see text]) kinetics and simulated 4-km cycling performance are synergistically improved by prior "priming" exercise and an all-out starting strategy.
Methods: Nine men completed 4 target work trials (114 ± 17 kJ) to assess [Formula: see text] kinetics and cycling performance in a repeated-measures, crossover experimental design. Trials were initiated with either a 12-s all-out start or a self-selected start and preceded by prior severe-intensity (70%Δ) priming exercise or no priming exercise.
Results: The [Formula: see text] mean response time (MRT) was lower (indicative of faster [Formula: see text] kinetics) in the all-out primed condition (20 ± 6 s) than in the all-out unprimed (23 ± 6 s), self-paced-unprimed (42 ± 13 s), and self-paced-primed (42 ± 11 s) trials (P < .05), with the [Formula: see text] MRT also lower in the all-out unprimed than the self-paced unprimed and self-paced primed trials (P < .05). Trial-completion time was shorter (performance was enhanced) in the all-out primed trial (402 ± 14 s) than in the all-out unprimed (408 ± 14 s), self-paced unprimed (411 ± 16 s), and self-paced primed (411 ± 19 s) trials (P < .05), with no differences between the latter 3 trials.
Conclusions: The findings from this study suggest that combining severe-intensity priming exercise with a short-duration all-out starting strategy can expedite the adjustment of [Formula: see text] and lower completion time during a cycling performance trial to a greater extent than either intervention administered independently. These results might have implications for optimizing performance in short-duration high-intensity competitive events such as a 4-km cycling time trial.
Keywords: exercise performance; fast/all-out start; near-infrared spectroscopy; pulmonary; warm-up exercise.