The "afterburn effect," by now you've probably heard the term at the gym, or come across it online and wanted to know more. Touted as the weight loss miracle that will have you burning calories long after your workout is complete, you are probably wondering if this is the real deal.
Let us cut through the confusion and give you all the information you need to train your body in the most effective way possible!
What is the afterburn effect?
While "afterburn" is getting tossed around with a great deal of frequency these days, this isn't a new concept in the fitness world. Formally, afterburn is known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption or EPOC. After you work out at a high intensity, your body goes through a series of activities in order to return it to its resting state or homeostasis. All of these processes require oxygen. This means your body is taking in oxygen at a higher right, making your metabolism work harder, leading to a continued calorie burn. The number of extra calories burned will be different from person to person but it is estimated
that you can increase your burn anywhere from 6 to 15 percent!
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Which workouts create the greatest afterburn?
High intensity interval training
, or HIIT, is the most effective way to increase your afterburn. HIIT workouts involve doing bursts of intense activity followed by short bursts of less intense activity or rest. What makes HIIT workouts effective is the amount of exertion they require. They often rely on multi-joint compound exercises, like burpees, to make your body work as hard as possible. You should be pushing yourself as hard as you can. At BodyRock, we love HIIT training. We love the results, and we love the way it makes us feel. Because HIIT relies on intensity, the duration of your workout doesn't matter nearly as much as it would if you were doing a steady state cardio workout. For all you busy folks out there, this means you can get a ridiculously powerful workout in an equally ridiculous short amount of time. If you'd like to give it a try, have a look at The DailyHIIT Show. All three seasons of this real time, 21 day program are available on demand with SweatFlix℠!
How long does the afterburn last?
The length of the afterburn varies depending on the person. It can last from a few hours after the workout to 24 hours. For some people, it can last up to 48 hours
after a workout! It is important to remember to take proper care to rest and repair your body. Doing too many HIIT workouts in a row can lead to overtraining and actually have a negative impact on your progress. Try to break up your HIIT workout with endurance training or workouts at lower intensity. This will help your body recover better so you can push your limits in your next HIIT session!
What do you think of HIIT training and the afterburn effect? Tell us your thoughts!