Why we do what we do.
The sort of training we do best fits under the guise of MRT (Metabolic Resistance Training)
What’s that I hear you ask? (Or it could just be the voices in my head)
Well before I venture into that. What exactly is your metabolism?
Basically, Metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy.
Even when you’re at rest, your body still needs energy for all its automatic functions, such as breathing, circulating blood, adjusting hormone levels, and growing and repairing cells. Note alcohol consumption is not listed as an automatic function.
The number of calories or kilojoules your body uses to perform these basic functions is known as your basal metabolic rate or what we generally refer to as our metabolism.
Several factors will determine what someone’s basal metabolic rate will be.
Body size and composition– Larger people and those that have more muscle will burn more calories.
Sex– (As in male/female although sex can definitely boost your metabolism) Men naturally have less body fat and more muscle than women which means more calories burned.
Age– As you age muscle mass tends to decrease and as a result slows down calorie burning. This can be countered significantly through resistance training.
The energy needs of your body’s basic functions stay fairly consistent and are not easily changed. Your basal metabolic rate will account for about 70 percent of the calories you burn every day.
Apart from your basal metabolic rate there are two other factors that will influence how many calories you burn each day.
Thermogenesis, which is just the process of absorbing, transporting and storing the food you consume. The amount of energy your body uses for this remains fairly steady and is also not easily changed.
Physical activity and exercise. This is any and all movement. This will account for the remainder of your body’s calorie expenditure. Of all the factors that determine how many calories you will burn each day, physical activity is by far the most variable.
So back to the original question. What is Metabolic Resistance Training?
MRT is essentially a high intensity workout utilising resistance based exercises as well as other cardiovascular exercises that is basically a merging of traditional weight training and cardio.
Why do we do it? Because of the intensity of the exercise and the relatively short recovery periods we are basically increasing the “metabolic cost” of the exercise.
This metabolic cost not only applies while you are working out but perhaps more importantly afterwards. The more intense and longer in duration a workout is the higher and longer the post exercise metabolic consumption is. In other words if you don’t have hours to spare for training then train intensely and you will boost your metabolism for quite some hours after you’ve finished your workout. This boost to your metabolic rate varies but can have an effect on your metabolism in excess of 24hrs in some cases.
As good as the five to six hundred calories you may burn during the workout is, it pales in comparison to the extra calories you will consume in the hours after the workout due to the increased caloric demands of your metabolism.
As well as this immediate effect on your metabolic rate any positive changes in your body composition, i.e. a higher muscle to fat ratio will increase your metabolism 24/7!
All in all, probably worth that 40min of “mild discomfort” I’d say!