Advertisement

European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 119, Issue 2, pp 509–518 | Cite as

Pulmonary and respiratory muscle function in response to 10 marathons in 10 days

  • Nicholas B. TillerEmail author
  • Louise A. Turner
  • Bryan J. Taylor
Original Article

Abstract

Purpose

Marathon and ultramarathon provoke respiratory muscle fatigue and pulmonary dysfunction; nevertheless, it is unknown how the respiratory system responds to multiple, consecutive days of endurance exercise.

Methods

Nine trained individuals (six male) contested 10 marathons in 10 consecutive days. Respiratory muscle strength (maximum static inspiratory and expiratory mouth-pressures), pulmonary function (spirometry), perceptual ratings of respiratory muscle soreness (Visual Analogue Scale), breathlessness (dyspnea, modified Borg CR10 scale), and symptoms of Upper Respiratory Tract Infection (URTI), were assessed before and after marathons on days 1, 4, 7, and 10.

Results

Group mean time for 10 marathons was 276 ± 35 min. Relative to pre-challenge baseline (159 ± 32 cmH2O), MEP was reduced after day 1 (136 ± 31 cmH2O, p = 0.017), day 7 (138 ± 42 cmH2O, p = 0.035), and day 10 (130 ± 41 cmH2O, p = 0.008). There was no change in pre-marathon MEP across days 1, 4, 7, or 10 (p > 0.05). Pre-marathon forced vital capacity was significantly diminished at day 4 (4.74 ± 1.09 versus 4.56 ± 1.09 L, p = 0.035), remaining below baseline at day 7 (p = 0.045) and day 10 (p = 0.015). There were no changes in FEV1, FEV1/FVC, PEF, MIP, or respiratory perceptions during the course of the challenge (p > 0.05). In the 15-day post-challenge period, 5/9 (56%) runners reported symptoms of URTI, relative to 1/9 (11%) pre-challenge.

Conclusions

Single-stage marathon provokes acute expiratory muscle fatigue which may have implications for health and/or performance, but 10 consecutive days of marathon running does not elicit cumulative (chronic) changes in respiratory function or perceptions of dyspnea. These data allude to the robustness of the healthy respiratory system.

Keywords

Ultramarathon Endurance Lung function Fatigue 

Abbreviations

FVC

Forced vital capacity

FEV1

Forced expiratory volume in 1 s

PIF

Peak inspiratory flow

PEF

Peak expiratory flow

MVV

Maximum voluntary ventilation

MIP

Maximum inspiratory mouth pressure

MEP

Maximum expiratory mouth pressure

URTI

Upper respiratory tract infection

VAS

Visual analogue scale

SD

Standard deviation

CV

Coefficient of variation

SEM

Standard error of measurement

CI

Confidence interval

ICC

Intra-class correlation

ANOVA

Analysis of variance

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Glen Moulds, Nick Collins, and the whole team at The Suffolk Academy, Suffolk, UK, for their kind hospitality and cooperation, and the runners who gave their time to participate in data-collection protocols.

Author contributions

NBT conceived and designed the study. NBT and LAT performed data collection and analysis. NBT, LAT, and BJT interpreted results and drafted manuscript. NBT, LAT, and BJT edited and revised the manuscript. NBT, LAT, and BJT approved the final draft.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

There are no conflicts of interest associated with the production of this study. Data are presented clearly, honestly, and without fabrication, falsification, or inappropriate data manipulation.

References

  1. Abraham KA, Feingold H, Fuller DD, Jenkins M, Mateika JH, Fregosi RF (2002) Respiratory-related activation of human abdominal muscles during exercise. J Physiol 541:653–663CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. American Thoracic Society/European Respiratory Society (2002) ATS/ERS Statement on respiratory muscle testing. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 166:518–624.  https://doi.org/10.1164/rccm.166.4.518 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Babcock MA, Pegelow DF, Harms CA, Dempsey JA (2002) Effects of respiratory muscle unloading on exercise-induced diaphragm fatigue. J Appl Physiol (1985) 93:201–206.  https://doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.00612.2001 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Barkley RA (2001) The executive functions and self-regulation: an evolutionary neuropsychological perspective. Neuropsychol Rev 11:1–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bonini M, Braido F, Baiardini I et al (2009) AQUA: allergy questionnaire for athletes. Development and validation. Med Sci Sports Exerc 41:1034–1041.  https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0b013e318193c663 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Celli B, Criner G, Rassulo J (1988) Ventilatory muscle recruitment during unsupported arm exercise in normal subjects. J Appl Physiol (1985) 64:1936–1941.  https://doi.org/10.1152/jappl.1988.64.5.1936 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Chevrolet JC, Tschopp JM, Blanc Y, Rochat T, Junod AF (1993) Alterations in inspiratory and leg muscle force and recovery pattern after a marathon. Med Sci Sports Exerc 25:501–507Google Scholar
  8. Cohen J (1977) Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences. Routledge, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  9. Dempsey JA, Amann M, Romer LM, Miller JD (2008) Respiratory system determinants of peripheral fatigue and endurance performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc 40:457–461.  https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0b013e31815f8957 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dimitriadis Z, Kapreli E, Konstantinidou I, Oldham J, Strimpakos N (2011) Test/retest reliability of maximum mouth pressure measurements with the MicroRPM in healthy volunteers. Respir Care 56:776–782.  https://doi.org/10.4187/respcare.00783 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Evans JA, Whitelaw WA (2009) The assessment of maximal respiratory mouth pressures in adults. Respir Care 54:1348–1359Google Scholar
  12. Freedman S (1991) Exercise as a bronchodilator. Clin Sci 83:383–389CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gordon B, Levine SA, Wilmaers A (1924) Observations on a group of marathon runners with special reference to the circulation. Arch Intern Med 33:425CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Guenette JA, Romer LM, Querido JS et al (2010) Sex differences in exercise-induced diaphragmatic fatigue in endurance-trained athletes. J Appl Physiol (1985) 109:35–46.  https://doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.01341.2009 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Harms CA, Wetter TJ, McClaran SR et al (1998) Effects of respiratory muscle work on cardiac output and its distribution during maximal exercise. J Appl Physiol (1985) 85:609–618.  https://doi.org/10.1152/jappl.1998.85.2.609 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Haverkamp HC, Metelits M, Hartnett J, Olsson K, Coast JR (2001) Pulmonary function subsequent to expiratory muscle fatigue in healthy humans. Int J Sports Med 22:498–503.  https://doi.org/10.1055/s-2001-17612 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Hodges PW, Gandevia SC (2000) Activation of the human diaphragm during a repetitive postural task. J Physiol 522 Pt 1:165–175CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hodges PW, Cresswell AG, Daggfeldt K, Thorstensson A (2001a) In vivo measurement of the effect of intra-abdominal pressure on the human spine. J Biomech 34:347–353CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Hodges PW, Heijnen I, Gandevia SC (2001b) Postural activity of the diaphragm is reduced in humans when respiratory demand increases. J Physiol 537:999–1008CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Hodges PW, Eriksson AE, Shirley D, Gandevia SC (2005) Intra-abdominal pressure increases stiffness of the lumbar spine. J Biomech 38:1873–1880CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Janssens L, Brumagne S, McConnell AK et al (2013) The assessment of inspiratory muscle fatigue in healthy individuals: a systematic review. Respir Med 107:331–346.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rmed.2012.11.019 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Johnson BD, Babcock MA, Suman OE, Dempsey JA (1993) Exercise-induced diaphragmatic fatigue in healthy humans. J Physiol 460:385–405CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Jones DA (1996) High-and low-frequency fatigue revisited. Acta Physiol Scand 156:265–270.  https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-201X.1996.192000.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Ker JA, Schultz CM (1996) Respiratory muscle fatigue after an ultra-marathon measured as inspiratory task failure. Int J Sports Med 17:493–496.  https://doi.org/10.1055/s-2007-972884 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Loke J, Mahler DA, Virgulto JA (1982) Respiratory muscle fatigue after marathon running. J Appl Physiol Respir Environ Exerc Physiol 52:821–824Google Scholar
  26. Lomax ME, McConnell AK (2003) Inspiratory muscle fatigue in swimmers after a single 200 m swim. J Sports Sci 21:659–664.  https://doi.org/10.1080/0264041031000101999 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mahler DA, Horowitz MB (1994) Perception of breathlessness during exercise in patients with respiratory disease. Med Sci Sports Exerc 26:1078–1081CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Maron MB, Hamilton LH, Maksud MG (1979) Alterations in pulmonary function consequent to competitive marathon running. Med Sci Sports 11:244–249Google Scholar
  29. Mathur S, Sheel AW, Road JD, Reid WD (2010) Delayed onset muscle soreness after inspiratory threshold loading in healthy adults. Cardiopulm Phys Ther J 21:5–12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Miller MR, Pincock AC, Oates GD, Wilkinson R, Skene-Smith H (1990) Upper airway obstruction due to goitre: detection, prevalence and results of surgical management. Q J Med 74:177–188Google Scholar
  31. Miller MR, Hankinson J, Brusasco V et al (2005) Standardisation of spirometry. Eur Respir J 26:319–338CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Millet GY, Lepers R (2004) Alterations of neuromuscular function after prolonged running, cycling and skiing exercises. Sports Med 34:105–116CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Millet GP, Millet GY (2012) Ultramarathon is an outstanding model for the study of adaptive responses to extreme load and stress. BMC Med 10:77–7015.  https://doi.org/10.1186/1741-7015-10-77 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. NHLBI Workshop summary (1990) Respiratory muscle fatigue. Report of the Respiratory Muscle Fatigue Workshop Group. Am Rev Respir Dis 142:474–480.  https://doi.org/10.1164/ajrccm/142.2.474 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Peters EM, Bateman ED (1983) Ultramarathon running and upper respiratory tract infections. An epidemiological survey. S Afr Med J 64:582–584Google Scholar
  36. Polkey MI, Green M, Moxham J (1995) Measurement of respiratory muscle strength. Thorax 50:1131–1135CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Robson-Ansley P, Howatson G, Tallent J et al (2012) Prevalence of allergy and upper respiratory tract symptoms in runners of the London marathon. Med Sci Sports Exerc 44:999–1004.  https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0b013e318243253d CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Romer LM, Polkey MI (2008) Exercise-induced respiratory muscle fatigue: implications for performance. J Appl Physiol (1985) 104:879–888CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Ross E, Middleton N, Shave R, George K, Mcconnell A (2008) Changes in respiratory muscle and lung function following marathon running in man. J Sports Sci 26:1295–1301.  https://doi.org/10.1080/02640410802104904 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Salinero JJ, Soriano ML, Ruiz-Vicente D et al (2016) Respiratory function is associated to marathon race time. J Sports Med Phys Fitness 56:1433–1438Google Scholar
  41. Taylor BJ, How SC, Romer LM (2006) Exercise-induced abdominal muscle fatigue in healthy humans. J Appl Physiol (1985) 100:1554–1562CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Teixeira RN, Mendes FA, Martins MA, Mickleborough TD, Carvalho CR (2014) AQUA(c) as predictor of allergy in elite marathon runners. World Allergy Organ J 7:7.  https://doi.org/10.1186/1939-4551-7-7 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Tiller NB, Campbell IG, Romer LM (2017) Influence of upper-body exercise on the fatigability of human respiratory muscles. Med Sci Sports Exerc 49:1461–1472.  https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000001251 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Vernillo G, Rinaldo N, Giorgi A et al (2015) Changes in lung function during an extreme mountain ultramarathon. Scand J Med Sci Sports 25:e374–e380.  https://doi.org/10.1111/sms.12325 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Volianitis S, McConnell AK, Koutedakis Y, McNaughton L, Backx K, Jones DA (2001) Inspiratory muscle training improves rowing performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc 33:803–809CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Warren GL, Cureton KJ, Sparling PB (1989) Does lung function limit performance in a 24-hour ultramarathon? Respir Physiol 78:253–263CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Wen AS, Woo MS, Keens TG (1997) How many maneuvers are required to measure maximal inspiratory pressure accurately. Chest 111:802–807CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Wuthrich TU, Marty J, Kerherve H, Millet GY, Verges S, Spengler CM (2015) Aspects of respiratory muscle fatigue in a mountain ultramarathon race. Med Sci Sports Exerc 47:519–527.  https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000000449 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Academy of Sport and Physical ActivitySheffield Hallam UniversitySheffieldUK
  2. 2.School of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

Personalised recommendations