WHAT EXACTLY IS THE AFTERBURN EFFECT?
The afterburn effect is simply additional energy expenditure that occurs after exercise. It is the fat your body burns AFTER you have completed your work out.
In order to truly understand how the afterburn effect works, you have to start by understanding how your body burns fat while you’re at the gym.
When you work out, your body uses more oxygen than it normally does. The more oxygen your body uses; the more calories you burn. However, your body doesn’t
stop using excess oxygen the moment you step off the treadmill or put the weights down. Instead, your body has to return to its normal resting state
and it takes oxygen to get it there. So, while your body is working hard to get back to that resting state, you will still burn more fat and use more
calories than you would if you were just sitting around or doing some light activity.
HOW MUCH FAT WILL YOU BURN AFTER A TRIP TO THE GYM?
That depends on how hard you worked out! The more intense your workout, the greater benefit you’ll see from the afterburn effect. When it comes to afterburn effect exercises HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), sprinting in several 30 second bursts will actually do more for you later on in regards to calorie burn and fat loss than slowly jogging for 30-60 minutes which will not produce that much of an “afterburn effect”. After all, it’s going to take your body longer to return to its normal resting state after a burst of sprinting than a slow jog.
However, some exercise physiologists have taken it a step further, saying that strength and power workouts come with a higher afterburn effect than traditional
cardio, no matter how intense your cardio training is.
JUST HOW INTENSE DO YOUR AFTERBURN EFFECT WORKOUTS NEED TO BE?
Studies have shown that afterburn effect exercises that get you to 70-85% of your max heart rate will make your afterburn effect even more effective. To figure out your max heart rate, simply subtract your age from 220. So, if you were 50 years old, your max heart rate would be 170. That means you’d need to perform exercises that got your heart rate up to 119-145 to see the best results from your afterburn effect and help you burn more fat.
IS THAT AS HARD AS IT SEEMS?
All of this may have you thinking that you’re going to be exhausted and dripping with sweat every time you want to maximize your afterburn effect. However, that’s not necessarily the case! Remember that intensity is the key. So, you don’t have to spend an hour at the gym working this hard for a good afterburn effect workout. You’ll be able to see great results in a fraction of that time. In fact, even just a few minutes of high-intensity exercise will cause your body to use more oxygen afterwards — and every little bit helps!
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