The Effect of Sprint Interval Training on Body Composition of Postmenopausal Women

Yati N. Boutcher; Stephen H. Boutcher; Hye Y. Yoo; Jarrod D. Meerkin


Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2019;51(7):1413-1419. 

In This Article


Participant characteristics. At pretesting and posttesting, there was no significant difference between SIT and control groups regarding height, weight, BMI, and lipid and glucose levels (P > 0.05; Table 1).

Age differences in women did not influence lean mass, total body fat, or aerobic fitness results.

Total and regional fat mass. For the SIT group, there was a significant increase in lean mass by 0.7 kg, F (1, 37) = 14.2, P = 0.001, η2 = 0.28 (Figure 1). The increase in lean mass was most pronounced in the trunk and legs (Table 2).

Figure 1.

Pre- and post-total lean mass after the 8-wk SIT intervention for the exercise and control groups. *P < 0.05.

Aerobic fitness. The SIT group significantly improved predicted V̇O2 max, F (1, 34) = 16.2, P ≤ 0.001, η2 = 0.32 by 12% (Figure 2). One exercise participant and two control participants felt unwell during the posttest and were excluded from analysis.

Figure 2.

Pre- and post-predicted maximal oxygen uptake after the 8-wk SIT intervention for the exercise and control groups. *P < 0.05.

Resting HR and blood pressure. There was no significant change in resting HR or blood pressure before or after exercise for the SIT or Control groups, P > 0.5 (Table 1).

Overall exercise HR data. The exercise program of 24 SIT cycling sessions over 8 wk was completed with 100% compliance. Over 8 wk of SIT, the average HR rate was 148 bpm (week 1, 147 bpm; week 8, 148 bpm); the average pedal cadence was 121 rpm (week 1, 117 rpm; week 8, 124 rpm); the average load was 0.7 kg (week 1, 0.55 kg; week 8, 0.85 kg); the average power output was 88.5 W (week 1, 64 W; week 8, 105 W), and the average RPE was 14.5 (week 1, 14.3; week 8, 14.7). The SIT group consistently worked at over 70% of their estimated maximum HR.

Diet. There was no significant change in macronutrient or micronutrient content before or after the intervention for the 3-d diet diary of the SIT or Control groups, P > 0.05. Diet for both groups was similar and total energy, averaged across groups, was 8290 ± 1726 kJ·d−1 that comprised of 45.5% carbohydrate, 18.9% protein, and 34.8% fat.