Supplementing dietary inorganic nitrate (NO3 -) has been shown to increase resting NO3 - and endothelial vasodialation. Consequently recent studies in variety of prolonged endurance exercise performances have shown its acute ergogenic effectiveness in reducing muscle fatigue and improving force generation mechanisms. However, little is known whether acute NO3 - ingestion increase supramaximal exercise performance outcomes such as the Wingate Anaerobic Test (WAT) and subsequent recovery markers from anaerobic fatigue including blood lactate concentration (BLC). This study tested the acute NO3 - effects on peak power (PP), mean power (MP), fatigue index (FI), peak cadence (PRPM), time to PP (TPP), minimum power (MinP) and post WAT recovery of BLC, heart rate (HR), systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP). With ethical approval, twelve healthy males (age 21 ± 1y) were randomised to consume either 70 ml of nitrate-rich beetroot juice (BRJ ~6.2 mmol.l-1 NO3 -) or 70 ml of low-calorie placebo (PL) 2.5 h prior to completing 30 s WAT. BLC, HR, SBP, and DBP were measured at rest and post WAT for min 3, 5, 7 and 10. BRJ supplementation significantly increased WAnT outcomes of PP (796 ± 140 vs. 770 ± 133 W), MP (652 ± 100 vs. 636 ± 91 W), MinP (449 ± 66 vs. 421 ± 63 W), TPP (7.1 ± 1.6 vs. 6.8 ± 1.0 s) and FI (43 ± 10 vs. 44 ± 9%) for BRJ vs. PLC respectively (all p < 0.05). WAT recovery data were lower for SBP (141.9 ± 15.9 vs. 152.0 ± 17.6, p < 0.05) but not for DBP, HR or peak BLC in BRJ vs. PL respectively. However, BLC recovery showed a trend toward a significant reduction in BRJ compared with PL (p = 0.07, main ANOVA effects). Ingesting NO3 - prior to supramaximal exercise improves WAT dependent anaerobic power and muscle recovery indices, possibly through promoting vasodialatory mechanisms, which suggests a potential important role for nitrate supplementation strategies in numerous anaerobic exercise events.
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