For most of us, the New Year signals a time to put our festive indulgence to rest and our fat loss resolution into action. While consistent training and a good diet will provide a solid base for your ‘War on Weight loss’, here is the ‘what’, ‘why’ and ‘how’ behind why Afterburn is the perfect artillery.
Afterburn is otherwise known as Exercise Post Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), and to understand why it should be present in your fat loss year, we first need to look at resting metabolism. Resting metabolism is the rate at which your body burns energy at rest, or, how much energy your body requires to carry out every day activities. It should be responsible for the largest amount of calories that you burn each day. Afterburn is a disturbance which occurs post workout, and produces a dramatic increase in your resting metabolic rate. However, its employment and effectiveness will depend entirely on the type of workout that you have endured.
Your metabolism increases a lot during any workout, due to the high energy expenditure that occurs. When training for fat loss, the value of the different training methods should be judged by the time it takes for your metabolic rate to return to normal after your workout or, in other words, how long your ‘afterburn lasts’. It can take around 30 minutes for long aerobic training (e.g. using a piece of cardio equipment at a steady speed) or (according to studies in Alwyn Cosgrove’s ‘The Hierarchy of Fat Loss’) in excess of 30 hours for high intensity resistance training.
During resistance training, your muscle fibers tear, causing repair to take place over the next 24-48 hours. This is so that the body can over compensate, in order to perform exercise better in the future. This process of repair, requires your body to burn more energy, for a prolonged period of time, especially if you’ve managed to tear muscle fibers throughout the majority of your body. Considering this, it becomes evident that high intensity circuit resistance training that includes a squat, lunge, bend, upper body push and pull exercises will be most effective for fat loss.
Performing these movements in sequence at a high intensity, followed by a brief rest period, will get your heart rate high enough to produce a large metabolic disturbance during your workout. The break down of muscle fibers throughout the whole body are also guaranteed and the very process in which the body will require more energy to repair itself has been triggered, increasing the rate at which you burn energy while you rest, befriending your fight against fat!