EPOC, which expands to "excess post-exercise oxygen consumption", is the effect that strenuous exercise can have on the body in which it continues to burn calories for up to 12-24 hours after the session.
How does it do this?
After a progressive and intense rate of exertion (an 8 - 10/10 on the Perceived Rate of Exertion scale), the body has the potential to burn calories well after the workout itself has finished. When we look at our resting heart rate and blood pressure, a state of homeostasis or equilibrium is present. Homeostasis refers to a state in which the body's heart rate, breathing, blood pressure, basic immune system functions, brain function and muscle tissue breakdown and rebuilding is balanced.
What happens after weight training that incorporates EPOC?
After weight training the muscle fibres are subject to stress and breakdown, inducing microtears to the tissue itself which need to be repaired over the next few days to be restrengthened and renewed. This process is done at a cost; the body consuming and utilising energy to repair, and as we may know energy is never lost, only ever transferred. To break it down further calories are burnt in the process of this muscle tissue repair. How good is it that we can burn calories even whilst we sleep and our body repairs itself too?
What to take away from the benefits of EPOC?
Weight training in particular can maximise the effects of EPOC and energy burn in your body after a workout to increase the likelihood of weight/fat loss. As well as this, if you are training on a high intensity weights program then you are likely also acquiring strength and lean muscle tissue which, in turn, boosts your metabolic rate assisting further in tone, self-image and feeling fitter/healthier.
This is only generalised information on weight training and hard cardio in relation to EPOC to benefit weight loss. However, finding a balanced weights and cardio plan specific to your goals, body type, activity levels and lean mass, along with a well-structured food plan is the best way to achieve the results you desire.
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