Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) is the prolonged boost that the body’s metabolism experiences after exercise. This EPOC effect is most pronounced after intense resistance training. Just like the training that we do at the X GYM. High Intensity Strength and Interval Training force a trauma to the body that must be recovered from. The “burn” that we feel when we strength train is actually the accumulation of lactic acid. This lactic acid is the by product of anaerobic exercise. Meaning that it is done with such a great intensity that oxygen is not being used. When the workout is completed the body must remove this lactic acid from the muscles, and replenish its fuel stores, as well as re oxygenate the blood. All of this requires energy.
Your body then is continuing to “work out” as you are getting back into your car, and go back to work or home or whatever you do after your workout. During this EPOC phase your heart rate is elevated above resting levels, and your body is also in an elevated fat burning state. This fat is being utilized to fuel these processes. So essentially you are doing your “Cardio” when you are done with your weights.
Studies have shown that the duration and level of the EPOC effect is most directly related to exercise intensity, not necessarily duration. This is why we advocate doing interval training for cardio. When someone does conventional “steady state” cardio the get an EPOC effect that is roughly equivalent to the amount of time they spent doing that activity. In other words, a thirty minute jog will result in 30 minutes of EPOC. Whereas a 20 minute high intensity interval training workout, will yield an EPOC effect of more than 80 minutes. More calories may be burned during the steady state workout than during the interval workout, but the net calorie and fat burn from the interval training workout, and the EPOC that ensues will be much greater.
This is one of the primary reasons why the X Gym workout has to be so intense. The harder the person lets the trainer push them during their workout, the longer and greater the EPOC effect will be, and therefore the more cardio and fat burning benefit they will receive.
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