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High-Intensity Training and Detraining

Posted Nov 17 2008 9:10pm

I found this neat study(pdf) that compared low and high-intensity strength training in older men.  The low intensity group used repetitions of 14 to 16, while the high-intensity group used repetitions of 6 to 8.  A 24 week training program was followed by a year of detraining.

Amazingly, after a year of detraining, the high-intensity group still maintained some benefits of the strength training.  For example, their performance on the leg press and chest press was still above baseline measures.  In the low-intensity group, most values returned to the baseline measures.

To me, this shows that high-intensity strength training is powerful medicine.  It also shows that it may not have to be performed as often as some people think.  High-intensity training leads to structural remodeling in the body, and these changes won't fade in a week or two. 

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