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EPOC is What You Need To Know About Fat Burning!

EPOC is What You Need To Know About Fat Burning!

You have noticed that after cooking when you turn the stove off, it’s not cool immediately – it takes some time for it to return to its normal state. The same thing happens with our body when we exercises – it takes some time for our body to restore the balance and return to its resting state. During the recovery time, we need more oxygen so that our bodies could function properly, and it might take as long as 48 hours for our bodies to recover fully. This recovery period can actually help you burn more calories as EPOC comes on the scene.

Understand the concept of EPOC

EPOC stands for excess post-exercise oxygen consumption and it is the amount of oxygen your body needs to get back to normal state and it is excess compared to the amount of oxygen you needed before doing exercises. When your body is in post-exercise state, there are a lot of processes going on which require oxygen, and thus you burn calories even when you’ve stopped working out.

Before you start doing exercises, your body is at resting state, and doesn’t require excess oxygen levels. Once you start with your training, your muscles fill with lactic acid and we use up our oxygen supplies, which need to be replenished in the period following our training session. To recover, our body needs energy, so we spend more calories during post-exercise period than we did during pre-exercise period. Research suggests [1] that more intense exercises that maximize excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, or EPOC, have a positive effect on weight loss.

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How long does the process last?

When having high-intensity trainings, your body uses more oxygen, and therefore your body needs to restore its oxygen supplies and it needs to work much harder compared to after less intense workouts. All this is happening 16-24 hours after your training session has ended, as indicated by research [2]. This means that once you have stopped working out, your body is still working for up to 24 hours to restore balance, and therefore consuming energy.

The math is simple – the more intense training session, the more oxygen your body will need afterwards, and therefore more calories will be burnt. Researchers from National Institute of Occupational Health [3] found that when training at 75% of your maximal oxygen consumption can result in much more EPOC, compared to training at 50% of your maximal oxygen consumption.

How many calories you can burn during the resting period depends on a number of factors, but an estimated number is up to 5 extra calories for every liter of oxygen your body consumes. A study at Appalachian State University [4] concluded that participants who cycled vigorously for 45 minutes burned extra 190 calories during the 14-hour post-exercise period compared to the days without any workout.

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Which types of workouts most stimulate EPOC?

HIIT

HIIT is high-intensity interval training and it is designed in way to make your body work harder. During HIIT workouts, you do short intervals of high-intensity exercises where you give your maximum and push yourself to the limit, followed by short periods of active rest. When you are alternating between such intense intervals and short periods of rest, it increases your heart rate, and when you are working out at 70-80% of your maximum heart rate, that’s when you maximize the EPOC effect.

This type of training doesn’t need to be time consuming, and there are plenty of short 10-minute training sessions available, and you can make a HIIT training with almost any exercises. Some simple HIIT trainings include:

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  • Walk and sprint: walk for 30 seconds, then sprint for 30 seconds. Repeat 8-10 times.
  • Pushups: Do 10 pushups, then rest for 30 seconds. If you want to make it even more difficult, rest for 15 seconds.
  • Squats: Do 10 squats, then rest for 30 second. You can repeat as long as you like.

Circuit training

This type of training can be very appealing to people who get bored with one type of exercise easily. It is very fast paced and it involves doing one exercise for 30 seconds to 5 minutes, and then you move on to the next exercise. Circuit training improves your strength and muscle endurance, and you can put different groups of muscles to work during one session. Circuit training has a similar effect as HIIT training – it creates increasing demand on your heart, therefore, you take more from your oxygen supplies. Moving from one type of exercise to another without rest, puts your body under pressure, thus it takes more time for your body to recover afterwards.

The best thing about circuit training is that you can do it at home without any equipment. You can create your own circuit training routine. First, you need to select your time limit – the ideal time span is from 10-45 minutes. Next select an upper-body exercise, then lower-body exercise, followed by a compound exercise, then choose a cardio for 1 minute. Rest for one minute and repeat.

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Resistance training

Resistance training is a type of training where your body is working against some external force that causes your muscles to contract, which increases your strength and endurance. Various research confirm [5] that resistance training has s greater EPOC effect compared, for example aerobic exercise. You put an increasing demand on your muscles during a resistance training, therefore, your body is also in a greater demand to restore the balance – thus more oxygen is needed.

You can go to the gym and try out resistance training on various machines, or you can train at home as well – you can use dumbbells, different types of resistance bands, even bricks or other heavy objects you have at home, or even your own body weight.

Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/ via pixabay.com

Reference

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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