Purpose: To evaluate the effects of wild trekking by examining, in postmenopausal women, the physiological adaptations to an intensive 5-day wild trek and comparing their responses to those displayed by a group of men of comparable age, training status and mountaineering skills. Methods: Six healthy, active postmenopausal women in their sixth decade of life participated in the study. Six men of comparable age and training status were also enrolled for gender-based comparisons. The participants traversed the Selvaggio Blu wild trek (Sardinia, Italy) completing a total of 56 km, for an overall height differential of 14,301 m. During all 5-day trek, subjects were supervised by two alpine guides. Changes in body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, and metabolic patterns of energy expenditure were evaluated before and after the intervention. Results: Total energy expenditure during the trek was significantly higher (p = 0.03) in women (12.88 ± 3.37 kcal/h/kg) than men (9.27 ± 0.89 kcal/h/kg). Extracellular (ECW) and intracellular water (ICW) increased significantly following the trek only in women (ECW: − 3.8%; p = 0.01; ICW: + 3.4%; p = 0.01). The same applied to fat-free mass (+ 5.6%; p = 0.006), fat mass (− 20.4%; p = 0.006), skeletal muscle mass (+ 9.5%; p = 0.007), and appendicular muscle mass (+ 7.3%; p = 0.002). Peak VO2/kg (+ 9.4%; p = 0.05) and fat oxidation (at 80 W: + 26.96%; p = 0.04; at 100 W: + 40.95%; p = 0.02; at 120 W: + 83.02%; p = 0.01) were found increased only in women, although no concurrent changes in partial pressure of end-tidal CO2 (PETCO2) was observed. Conclusions: In postmenopausal women, a 5-day, intensive and physically/technically demanding outdoor trekking activity led to significant and potentially relevant changes in body composition, energy balance and metabolism that are generally attained following quite longer periods of training.

Physiological adaptations of active postmenopausal women and matched men to the multi-day Sardinia Selvaggio Blu wild trek: a gender-comparative pilot study

Ghiani G.;Crisafulli A.;Cugusi L.;
2024-01-01

Abstract

Purpose: To evaluate the effects of wild trekking by examining, in postmenopausal women, the physiological adaptations to an intensive 5-day wild trek and comparing their responses to those displayed by a group of men of comparable age, training status and mountaineering skills. Methods: Six healthy, active postmenopausal women in their sixth decade of life participated in the study. Six men of comparable age and training status were also enrolled for gender-based comparisons. The participants traversed the Selvaggio Blu wild trek (Sardinia, Italy) completing a total of 56 km, for an overall height differential of 14,301 m. During all 5-day trek, subjects were supervised by two alpine guides. Changes in body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, and metabolic patterns of energy expenditure were evaluated before and after the intervention. Results: Total energy expenditure during the trek was significantly higher (p = 0.03) in women (12.88 ± 3.37 kcal/h/kg) than men (9.27 ± 0.89 kcal/h/kg). Extracellular (ECW) and intracellular water (ICW) increased significantly following the trek only in women (ECW: − 3.8%; p = 0.01; ICW: + 3.4%; p = 0.01). The same applied to fat-free mass (+ 5.6%; p = 0.006), fat mass (− 20.4%; p = 0.006), skeletal muscle mass (+ 9.5%; p = 0.007), and appendicular muscle mass (+ 7.3%; p = 0.002). Peak VO2/kg (+ 9.4%; p = 0.05) and fat oxidation (at 80 W: + 26.96%; p = 0.04; at 100 W: + 40.95%; p = 0.02; at 120 W: + 83.02%; p = 0.01) were found increased only in women, although no concurrent changes in partial pressure of end-tidal CO2 (PETCO2) was observed. Conclusions: In postmenopausal women, a 5-day, intensive and physically/technically demanding outdoor trekking activity led to significant and potentially relevant changes in body composition, energy balance and metabolism that are generally attained following quite longer periods of training.
2024
Body composition; Cardiorespiratory fitness; Energy expenditure; Hiking; Trekking
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/401563
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