Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Dr. Scott Lyons (Director), Dr. James Navalta, Dr. Mark Schafer, Dr. Scott Arnett

Degree Program

Department of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport

Degree Type

Master of Science


Obesity and its subsequent disease states are major health problems in the United States. In many ways, obesity can be considered a “disease state” itself due to the changes it causes on the body. High-intensity exercise also places acute stress the body, putting humans in recovery from exercise in a state that may be analogous to a temporary disease state. The purpose of this study was to examine biomarkers associated with obesity (CRP and Leptin) before and after continuous and intermittent bouts of exercise in an obese but otherwise healthy sample vs. a healthy, non-obese sample. This investigation focused on examining the obese sample’s biomarkers at rest compared to those of the healthy group immediately and 1 hour-post exercise. Eighteen male subjects participated, with nine in each group. Each subject performed a VO2 max test and a series of three anaerobic Wingate tests at least one week apart in a cross-over study design. Blood was taken at baseline, immediately-post, and 1-hour post for each exercise mode. A significant difference was noted between groups for CRP at baseline on the VO2 testing day. A significant difference between groups existed in leptin levels at baseline on both testing days. The only significant change was the decrease in leptin from post to 1- hour post for during the VO2 in the obese group. However, both exercise protocols demonstrated various effects on the subjects and groups. Healthy participants were examined individually, and two of them showed possible signs of being at risk for obesity and its subsequent disease states based on post exercise “spikes” in CRP and leptin that caused the levels of the biomarkers to be closer to those in the obese group at rest. Another three subjects saw at least two spikes. Thus, a total of five subjects could potentially be “at-risk” based on the assumptions of the present study. These results suggest CRP and Leptin could potentially hold the ability to classify someone in a “preobesity state.” Further investigations are warranted based on these initial results and should focus on biomarkers more specific to obesity.


Exercise Science | Psychology of Movement