PURPOSE: Physical activity is associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, but dose dependency of long-term physical exercise on biomarkers within coagulation and fibrinolysis is unknown. We aimed to investigate effects of two doses of daily endurance exercise on biomarkers of the haemostatic balance in overweight men.
METHODS: Haemostatic variables were investigated in 53 healthy, younger (20-40 years), moderately overweight (BMI 25-30 kg/m(2)) men randomly assigned to 3 months of strictly controlled endurance exercise at two different doses corresponding to an energy expenditure of 600 kcal/day (HIGH), 300 kcal/day (MOD), or to maintain their habitual lifestyle (CON). Fasting blood samples were collected before and after the intervention and analysed for thrombin generation (endogenous thrombin potential, ETP) and concentrations of tissue-type plasminogen activator (t-PA), plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1), and von Willebrand factor (vWF).
RESULTS: We observed significant within-group decreases in ETP (MOD 7 %; HIGH 6 %) and in t-PA (MOD 22 %; HIGH 21 %) and PAI-1 (MOD 16 %; HIGH 32 %) in both training groups, and no changes in the CON group. At 3 months, between-group differences were observed for ETP (p = 0.016) and t-PA (p = 0.012) due to significantly lower values in MOD and HIGH compared with CON. Borderline significant between-group differences were observed for PAI-1 (p = 0.082). A significant increase was observed in vWF in HIGH, but with no between-group differences.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results demonstrate an effect of 3 months of daily endurance exercise on biomarkers of the haemostatic balance in the direction of reduced cardiovascular risk, independent of exercise dose.