Daily muscle glycogen recovery after training is important for athletes. Few studies have reported a continuous change in muscle glycogen for 24 h. We aimed to investigate the changes in carbohydrate intake amount on muscle glycogen recovery for 24 h after exercise using13 C-magnetic resonance spectroscopy (13 C-MRS). In this randomized crossover study, eight male participants underwent prolonged high-intensity exercise, and then consumed one of the three carbohydrate meals (5 g/kg body mass (BM)/d, 7 g/kg BM/d, or 10 g/kg BM/d). Glycogen content of thigh muscle was measured using13 C-MRS before, immediately after, and 4 h, 12 h and 24 h after exercise. Muscle glycogen concentration decreased to 29.9 ± 15.9% by exercise. Muscle glycogen recovery 4–12 h after exercise for the 5 g/kg group was significantly lower compared to those for 7 g/kg and 10 g/kg groups (p < 0.05). Muscle glycogen concentration after 24 h recovered to the pre-exercise levels for 7 g/kg and 10 g/kg groups; however, there was a significant difference for the 5 g/kg group (p < 0.05). These results suggest that carbohydrate intake of 5 g/kg BM/d is insufficient for Japanese athletes to recover muscle glycogen stores 24 h after completing a long-term high-intensity exercise.
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