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The exercise and affect relationship: evidence for the dual-mode model and a modified opponent process theory.

Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology 32(5):711 (2010) PMID 20980712

This study examined the relationship between exertion level and affect using the framework of opponent-process theory and the dual-mode model, with the Activation-Deactivation Adjective Checklist and the State Anxiety Inventory among 14 active and 14 sedentary participants doing 20 min of treadmill exercise at speeds of 5% below, 5% above, and at lactate threshold (LT). We found a significant effect of time, condition, Time × Condition, and Time × Group, but no group, Group × Condition, or Time × Group × Condition effects, such that the 5% above LT condition produced a worsening of affect in-task compared with all other conditions whereas, across conditions, participants experienced in-task increases in energy and tension, and in-task decreases in tiredness and calmness relative to baseline. Posttask, participants experienced mood improvement (decreased tension, anxiety, and increased calmness) across conditions, with a 30-min delay in the above LT condition. These results partially support the dual-mode model and a modified opponent-process theory.

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