Kyle WitherbeeƗ1, Brad GieskeƗ1, Mary Altepete1Ɨ1, Scott Richmondǂ1, & Chad Kerksickǂ1, FACSM, 1Lindenwood University, Saint Charles, Missouri

Sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) and caffeine are two sport supplements that have been widely explored for their possible ergogenic effects during exercise. Few studies have looked at sodium bicarbonate and caffeine supplementation together and no studies have included a running test. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of sodium bicarbonate and caffeine, both independent and synergistically, on a field-based intermittent sprint test. METHODS: Three men and ten women, of recreational fitness level, completed this research study. All participants were administered a medical history checklist, informed consent, and scored above the 70th percentile, according to ACSM guidelines, for gender and age-matched VO2max norms. On four separate visits, participants consumed a masked supplement solution in randomized order consisting of either 300mg/kg NaHCO3, 5mg/kg caffeine, 300mg/kg NaHCO3 + 5mg/kg caffeine, or placebo (NaCl added to mimic taste) and then performed a 150-yard shuttle test 1-hr post-ingestion. The test consisted of participants running to markers spaced every five yards, from 0 to 25, in ascending order and returning to the start line each time. This sequence is done for 30 seconds, followed by 30 seconds of rest for six bouts. Distance covered was recorded from the last 5-yard marker crossed in 30 seconds. Variables of RPE, blood lactate, and heart rate were measured after the 2nd, 4th, and 6th run. RESULTS: A one-way ANOVA showed no differences in total distance, RPE, or heart rate (p>.05) between all groups. Blood lactate showed an improvement with NaHCO3 supplement compared to the placebo condition after the second and final running bouts (p=.002, p=.020 respectively). A difference was also present in blood lactate with NaHCO3 + caffeine versus the placebo condition after the second running bout (p=.018). CONCLUSION: Based on the preliminary findings of this study, ingestion of sodium bicarbonate, caffeine, and sodium bicarbonate with caffeine had no effect on athletic performance measured by an anaerobic running test.

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