Afterburn effect in sports: what you should know

The physical demand of intense exercise generates a period of increased oxygen consumption at the end. It is possible to take advantage of that time to continue burning calories.

Last update: 08 February, 2022

After performing a training routine with a certain intensity, there is a short period of time in which the body continues to burn fat. It is known as afterburn effect Y It is generated as a natural process of recovery of the organism.

During training, the metabolism is forced to take in more oxygen. This leads to excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, also called COPD, for its acronym in English. To make the most of this, it is convenient to follow a series of tips.

What is the afterburn effect and why does it occur?

This effect is a process in which the body continues to burn calories for a few hours after training. Depending on the type of exercise and its intensity, the body continues to generate a higher energy expenditure in the recovery period. It ends when it returns to the idle state.

Everything is due to the acceleration of the metabolism that causes the action of exercising, either with cardiovascular or strength training. The demand for a higher oxygen consumption means that the body has to gradually return to its normal rhythm after the routine.

These hours are known as afterburn effectin which, while breathing returns to its usual rate, cellular chemical processes continue at an accelerated rate. The body uses more energy to regenerate muscles and return to resting levels. This time can be used to continue burning fat.

After exercise, the body will continue to burn fat due to metabolic inertia.

How long does the effect last afterburn?

Although there are no scientific studies indicating a specific duration of effect afterburnit can be determined a period of 12 to 24 hours after exercise. It is what, in general, it takes for the body to resume its usual rhythm after an intense routine.

The duration of the effect and the amount of calories that are burned are matters under investigation. However, this depends on the type of workout and intensity, as well as the total minutes spent.

Even if it takes up to a full day for the effect to wear off, The first moments after exercise are the most important. The effect is gradually diluted, as the body recovers its usual routine of life.

How to make the most of the afterburn effect?

Taking into account that during the effect afterburn the body continues to burn calories, it is advisable to combine intense exercise routines with periods of rest. In this way, the body is allowed to enter a stage of muscular and respiratory recovery.

The change of rhythm during the routine demands the metabolism to the maximum, causing it not to get used to a certain oxygen consumption. The result is more intense work, which demands a longer recovery time. There is the effect afterburn.

As for calories, it is not entirely clear how many can be burned thanks to this process. On the other hand, its duration depends on the intensity of the exercise. Despite everything, some specialists suggest a figure of 100 to 200 calories burned during the effect.

Training Tips

There are different aspects to take into account depending on the type of training that is carried out. In both cardio routines and strength exercises, it is possible to make the most of the recovery period to continue losing weight:

  • To combine: A good idea is to program a routine that intersperses strength exercises with aerobic demands. For example, practicing sessions of lifting weights and then moving on to movements of cardio.
  • Overall time: it is advisable to design training days that take no less than 45 minutes. A greater temporary requirement demands more recovery time to the metabolism, therefore, the longer the effect will be. afterburn.
  • heart rate: for the effect to occur, routines that require a work of 80% of the maximum heart rate must be practiced. Thus, the body needs to consume more oxygen.
  • Running: Going for a run allows you to insert different rhythms in a simple way. For example, jogging for 10 minutes, then a sprint 5 or 10 minutes, and lower the intensity in the following meters.
  • Scheduled routines: There are training programs that already take into account changes in pace and intensity. For example, HIIT or cross fit.
HIIT and cross fit are interesting options to enhance the effect afterburn.

How to accompany the training?

It is important that an intense exercise routine is complemented by adequate water consumption. You should always have a bottle nearby. Also, focus on a diet rich in protein and carbohydrates.

practice routines cardio and combine with other strength, and then finish with HIIT. It is necessary to prevent the body from getting used to a certain type of exercise. Otherwise, the workload is reduced and it is difficult to come out of sleep.

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