Int J Sports Med 1990; 11(3): 238-243
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-1024799
© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Gastric Emptying With Repeated Drinking During Running and Bicycling

N. J. Rehrer, F. Brouns, E. J. Beckers, F. ten Hoor, W. H. M. Saris
  • University of Limburg, Nutrition Research Center, Dept. of Human Biology, Maastricht, The Netherlands
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Publication Date:
14 March 2008 (online)


The high prevalence of gastrointestinal complaints in long-distance runners makes the movements specific to this type of exercise suspected of causing a disruption of normal gastrointestinal function. Gastric empty-I ing rate is one indicator thereof. In the present study trained j volunteers performed similar repeated fluid ingestion tests I while running and while bicycling for 80 min at 70% V̇O2max. Control tests at rest were also conducted. Two drinks containing carbohydrate were tested, one hypertonic, and one isotonic. Artificially sweetened water was used as a control. Gastric emptying rate of the isotonic drink, expressed as a percentage of the volume in the stomach at the beginning of each measurement period, did not differ between cycling and running during the first 40 min and was faster during cycling than during running between 40 and 80 min. With the hypertonic drink no differences between cycling and running were observed. In comparing gastric emptying rates after each sequential bolus, at rest, the isotonic drink was observed to maintain a high emptying rate, equal to that of water, whereas the hypertonic drink emptied more slowly after the first 20-min period. A similar pattern was observed during both running and cycling. The isotonic drink continued to empty quickly after the initial 20 min, whereas GE rate of the hypertonic drink decreased after the initial 20 min.