Thursday, 21 June 2012

The Afterburn Effect

Borrowed from
What does it mean:
The Afterburn Effect, or EPOC (Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption) as the proper term is, basically means that your body's metabolic rate increases after exercising. 
Since the metabolic rate is increased, your body uses more energy, which means it can help you lose weight. 

So, how does it work:
The cells in the body uses oxygen as fuel (along with nutrition from food) to complete it's daily tasks, such as making your organs function.
During normal rest, you don't use all of your VO2max (Maximum uptake of oxygen), which is said to be 0.25 lO2/min for an average adult.

Now.. When you've been working out, you of course use more oxygen, because you also need to fuel the muscles. This means, that when you're done working out, your body is in an oxygen deficit state, and the the cells in your body needs to use more oxygen to replenish the difference.

How long does it last:
It's different from person to person, due to the basal metabolic rate being individually different. It also depends the intensity of the workout, as well as the duration of the workout.
Studies, however, claim it to last from 15 minutes and up to 48 hours.

Get the most out of the Afterburn Effect:
Have a look at the photo above; from it, we can read, that doing traditional cardio workout (grey), at low to moderate intensity, doesn't have as high of an afterburn effect as doing HIIT workouts (red). Doing High Intensity Interval Training has a higher afterburn effect, than traditional cardio, because of the higher intensity.
You're able to do for example 10 intervals of 1 minutes with very high intensity followed by a rest period of 1-2 minutes, compared to doing 10 minutes continuously of the same very high intensity or 20-30 minutes of low to moderate intensity.

I have to say though, that there are different opinions out there, whether or not the afterburn exists, and whether or not it can last up to 48 hours.

What do you think ? Does it really exist, and if so, can it really be up to 48 hours ?
Comment below, and let me know :)