It is well known that sport keeps the body healthy and fit. But what many of you might not know is the exercise afterburn effect that still takes place inside your metabolism system even after the workout is over for a long time. I will tell you the best ways to use this effect to burn some extra calories and also briefly talk about the 2-hour rule before exercise.
The Post 2 Hour Exercise Rule
It is essential to have a balanced diet while doing exercise. As the body needs a lot of vitamins and minerals to function correctly, doing sport will deplete over time the body’s storage.
Many people make a mistake to eat right before going out to do their workouts. It is very important not to eat anything before two hours as the blood sugar will increase dramatically. The higher blood sugar level causes the body to use excessive amounts of energy during sports, but will not burn the fat cells.
At first, the body uses the carbohydrate already stored as an energy source. If the carbohydrate storage is full, it will take the energy from here. As soon as the storage is empty, the body takes the energy from fat cells and starts burning them. This body function causes a reduction of fat cells due to the afterburn effect. I will explain more in detail about this in the next chapters below:
What exactly is the exercise afterburn effect?
The afterburn effect talks about the increase in metabolism activity reaching far beyond after exercising. OK, many people are aware that during exercise, the body should burn fat, but it doesn’t stop here. The afterburn effect can last up to 48 hours for some people.
Yes, you have read it correctly, it is 48 hours!
For some time, the basic metabolism rate will increase while your body is resting. As an illustration to make it a litter bit more clearer: You are sitting and relaxing on the sofa while watching TV. During this time, the body still burns fat cells and is losing fat as a result.
It doesn’t matter if you do running, bicycling, or a gym workout; the afterburn effect always kicks in.
Several studies have pointed out that it is not only the intensity of sweating during exercise, but it also depends on what you do before and after it. As I have mentioned earlier, do not eat anything two hours before doing sports, and also watch what you consume afterward.
Of course, it is much better to stimulate the metabolism system by an intense and sweaty exercise instead of doing a casual walk with your dog.
How long does the afterburn effect last?
You should also read: The psychology of losing weight
There are three phases in the exercise afterburn effect which can be compared to intermittent dieting as you need to force the body to use its own reserves first:
Phase 1: Right after doing an exercise (1hour)
Right after finishing the exercise afterburn effect is at its heights. The body is powered by a lot of hormones and trying to refill the lost energy. In addition, the nerve system, blood pigments, and muscle proteins are all very exhausted. It is the body’s signal to increase the metabolism system to regenerate all the lost strength without any delay.
As the body machine is in “regeneration mode,” many calories are being burnt.
Phase 2: A couple of hours after exercise (2-4 hours)
After the initial regeneration phase of the body, the muscles are in focus as they are tired and tense. The body still continues to convert proteins into amino acids for new cell production. This conversion also consumes a lot of energy or calories, and the fat burning still continues. Isn’t this great!
Phase 3: Up to 48 hours after exercise
During this phase, the body functions slowly return to normal. However, the muscles still require some amount of calories keeping the metabolism system on a slightly higher level. Even after two days of physical activities, the extra calories are still burning the fat cells.
How to maximize the afterburn effect?
- A high-intensity training should be top of your list, as it will allow you to burn another extra 20-25% of fat cells. As you strengthen your muscles during running or a gym workout, they need extra calories to regenerate themselves.
- Eating habits after an exercise: Please limited the carbohydrates after you have finished. The body needs to use your carbohydrates storage and NOT the new intake of it. For this reason, please eat more proteins as it is vital for the muscles rebuilding process. You can consume, on average, around 10-20g of protein right after your training.
- Exercise Duration: Many people think the longer the workout, the more calorie consumption the body uses. Well, this is not entirely correct. As a formula, the more prolonged AND more intense the exercise, the more effective is the calorie burn.
TIP: In order to increase your sweat, it is very helpful to use a Sweat Enhancer that you can apply on your skin
How to correctly exercise to benefit from the afterburn effects
This article may interest you: How to overcome body odor + treatment tips
With mild exercise training, the afterburn effect will only slightly increase. As I have pointed out, sweating and an intensive workout are a must! After only a view minutes, your pulse will quickly rise, sending a signal to the body: Increase the workload!
A study from the University of Australia proves that an arduous exercise will increase the body fat burning process by 30%. Read the study here
To phrase it differently: If you burn, for example, during your exercise around 500 calories, the next 15 hours will bring an extra 150 calories down your weight.
To summarize, a regular walk will not do much, instead get yourself into a good exercise routine with a lot of sweat involved.
The afterburn effect is, in fact, no myth, and you should take advantage of it. After each workout session, you can burn up to 30% more, reaching your goal much faster