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. 1987;25(1):18-23.
doi: 10.1159/000180628.

Salivary Cortisol for Monitoring Adrenal Activity During Marathon Runs

Salivary Cortisol for Monitoring Adrenal Activity During Marathon Runs

N J Cook et al. Horm Res. .


In non-elite male runners (n = 8), changes in adrenal activity were monitored by measurement of salivary cortisol in samples collected at 4-mile intervals during marathon runs. These changes were compared with those in similarly timed samples collected on rest days. Immediately prior to the Cardiff marathon, at 09.00 h, mean salivary cortisol concentrations (21.5 nmol/l) were higher than those in similarly timed rest day samples (14.9 nmol/l). Cortisol concentrations increased during the marathon, and although values at 25 miles were high (79.4 nmol/l), maximum values (87.9 nmol/l) were observed in samples collected 30 min after completion of the run. Some Cardiff marathon runners also participated in the Bristol marathon (n = 4) and a non-competitive event (n = 3). The changing pattern in secretory activity was similar in all events. The easy collection of saliva without cessation of exercise is ideal for monitoring the hormonal response to exercise.

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