If you came to 6am TRX & Cardio this morning or 7am Fitness Bootcamp, and you’re reading this post anywhere from 15 minutes to 48 hours after your workout, you’re still burning extra calories from that fitness class. When you engage in high intensity exercise – like sprints, Tabata intervals or metabolic strength training – your body burns calories as it attempts to bring your system back to homeostasis (a balanced resting state).
In sports medicine this phenomenon is represented by the acronym EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption). The more intense and enduring the workout, the greater the amount of time EPOC will last.
In the study Bahr and Sejersted (1991), researchers found when athletes exercised at an intensity level of 75% of VO2 Max for 80 minutes, they reached their greatest EPOC – that’s no small feat! 75% of VO2 Max roughly corrisponds to 85% of you Max Heart Rate. That’s 80 minutes of anaerobic training to achieve an excess burn of around 150 calories. The good news – those calories add up.
Say you come into Fitness Bootcamp three days a week and achieve even half that burn during your 50 minute workout in the studio. Thats an extra 75 calories a day X 3 days per week or 225 calories a week. If you end up working out even only half the year – 26 weeks – you’ll burn 5,850 calories a year (that’s burning almost 2lbs off the scale while you sit here and read posts on the Pura Vida Urban website or check out what we’re up to on Facebook – how great is that!).
So next time you’re digging deep for a little extra motivation to put some more intensity into those mountain climbers, think of all those calories you’ll be burning all day long!
Elkaim, Yuri. “What is EPOC and Why is it Your Fat Burning Friend?.”Treadmill Trainer. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Dec. 2011. <www.mytreadmilltrainer.com/what-is-epoc.html>.