Date of Completion

Spring 5-1-2020

Thesis Advisor(s)

Jeanne McCaffery

Honors Major

Allied Health Sciences


Exercise has been shown to improve insulin resistance, a key factor in mediating cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, in both obese and healthy individuals. Aerobic training (AT) and resistance training (RT) have both been shown to improve insulin resistance, yet less research exists on RT’s specific impact. Additionally, there is a lack of direct comparison of RT vs AT using standardized exercise programs, potentially confounding insulin resistance results. In “Aerobic Compared to Resistance Training to Reduce Insulin Resistance in Obesity”, study participants were screened for eligibility, received baseline and post-intervention health assessments, randomized to a study arm, and received one of three treatments (AT, RT, or Control). REDCap software was used in designing and translating this longitudinal, stratified, and controlled study into an entirely digital format; effectively collecting data at each research stage, while creating a running database for subsequent analysis. Several REDCap features allowed for remote and in-person data collection, the stratification of participants to different intervention arms, generation and designation of data collection instruments (specific to each research phase and intervention arm), and longitudinal data collection for each participant. The specific drawbacks, challenges, and benefits to using REDCap in “Aerobic Compared to Resistance Training to Reduce Insulin Resistance in Obesity” will be investigated and discussed in detail. Using REDCap was an effective means of ensuring standardization in research protocol across participant arms, such that the study’s results may be applied to the growing body of research on insulin resistance, physical activity, obesity, and CVD.