That old excuse “I’ve no energy left to go training” has been scientifically disproven years ago. Sports scientists at the University of Georgia did an experiment with fourteen women and discovered that weight training actually gives you energy.
Half of the world complains of fatigue and listlessness – think of all the energy pills, snacks and drinks that get consumed. Not a good scene, the researchers thought to themselves. Surely it would be better if all those tired and listless people went and did something. Training in a gym, for example? Wouldn’t they feel more energetic if they did so?
To answer these questions the researchers did an experiment with women who lead a sedentary life. The women did nothing for one session, the next time they trained their main muscle groups at 15 percent of their 1RM – thats a light training session. The next time they trained their muscles at 70 percent of their 1RM – a serious weight training session.
Every eleven minutes the researchers asked their subjects how tired or energetic they felt. They did the same again 20 and 30 minutes after the training session had finished. The results showed that the weight training did not tire the women out. In fact, they felt more energetic than after doing nothing.
Training with light weights was better for getting rid of tiredness than the serious stuff, but even the heavy training session gave the women a subjective feeling of more energy than it had cost them.
The researchers also asked the women how strong and energetic they felt. The responses here indicated that the heavy training had a slightly greater effect than the light training, shown in the figure below.
The effects are not statistically significant. The researchers think that the effect may even be a placebo effect. But so what – does that matter in this case?
J Sports Sci. 2009 May; 27(7): 701-9.
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