The Science behind EPOC

Why Orangetheory Works?

What is EPOC?

EPOC stands for Excessive Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption, a concept in exercise physiology that we like to call the 'afterburn'. When you physically exert yourself for a period of time, you will always feel the need to recover from the exertion. The human body's metabolism is the same, after a period of high intensity exertion, the body needs time to recover in a process that elevates the metabolic rate for a period until it returns to a normal state which is known  homeostasis.

Here are three interesting facts about EPOC and your body:

  • More Oxygen means More Calories Burnt

How much do you know about Calories? A Calorie is the amount of energy required to heat 1 liter of water by 1 degree centigrade. Everybody's metabolism is different, but everyone burns calories when consuming oxygen! Research shows that the number of calories released from the consumption of oxygen during cellular metabolism differs based on the nutrient source, ie. protein, carbohydrate, fat or energy substrates, but our bodies tend to release around 5 calories of energy for every liter of oxygen that we  consume.

EPOC Oxygen in heart rate
  • Oxygen is used intensively in Recovery Period

The human body's metabolism is the process by which the things we eat are turned into fuel for muscular activity. The body turns the nutrients we eat into Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) which you may remember from Biology class in High School. ATP is produced in one of two ways, with oxygen using aerobic pathways and without oxygen relying on anareobic respiratory pathways. Anareobic respiration is what creates the lactic acid build up that gives you that burning sensation in your muscles when you are exercising. Oxygen is used to produce ATP that is needed during and after a workout, it is also required to restore oxygen levels in the blood, to help protein repair muscle tissue damaged while working out, resynthesise muscle glycogen from lactate and to restore the body back to normal temperature.

  • High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT is one of the most effective ways of stimulating the EPOC effect

Intensity is the name of the game when it comes to maximizing the EPOC effect. Everyone has a different metabolism and a different fitness profile, which is why our OTBeat™ technology is great. Our technology means every single person in our classes is maximizing their EPOC effect based on their own individual and unique metabolism, based on real-time heart-rate monitoring.