Centr Trainer Luke Zocchi jumps high into the air holding a slam ball.
Luke Zocchi

What is a metcon workout & can it boost your fitness?

Luke Zocchi

If you’re on a mission to make this the year you become your fittest self ever, I have two words for you: metabolic conditioning.

Sometimes called metcon, it’s a way to optimize your energy use and give your best every time you hit the mat, track or field.

But what is it, really? Let’s get you conditioned – and put it into action with a metcon workout from our new Centr training program.

What is metabolic conditioning?

You’ve heard of metabolism – that’s how the cells in your body convert food into energy. Well, metabolic conditioning is about increasing your body’s ability to store and then use that energy.

When you’re training (or just doing life), your body calls on several systems to deliver this energy:

  • Your phosphagen system gives you energy for short bursts of intense activity by burning the creatine phosphate found in muscle and tissue. It runs out quickly – which is why it’s best for high-intensity actions that last for 30 seconds max.
  • Your anaerobic system burns carbs as fuel to deliver energy for short to moderate periods of 30 seconds to about 4 minutes.
  • Your aerobic system is used for endurance, using oxygen to burn carbs and fats for slow and steady energy release.

Just like you zoom in on certain muscles, you can strengthen these systems by focusing on your work-rest ratio.

For instance, in our new workout program Centr Circuit: Elevate, we use tough work periods followed by shorter rest breaks to challenge your phosphagen and anaerobic systems – helping them to work more efficiently.

In other words, you’ll get better at calling on energy when you need it. And that takes you another step closer to your fastest, strongest self.

What is metabolic resistance training?

So, we already know that tough work periods with shorter rest periods will challenge and boost your phosphagen and anaerobic systems.

Metabolic resistance training does exactly the same thing, just with added resistance.

Instead of a classic weight-lifting session – like we do in Centr Power, with low-rep sets and long rest breaks – metabolic resistance training is about high-rep sets with shorter rest periods.

We’ll have you doing plenty of that in Centr Circuit: Elevate, too!

What are the benefits of metabolic conditioning?

The biggest benefit of working on your metcon is actually pretty simple…

You’ll get fitter, faster. Because your body is more efficient at re-supplying energy, you’ll be less out of breath and have more endurance in workouts that used to defeat you before you made it to the finish line.

You’ll also have more energy in day-to-day life. As your body discovers how to store and use energy more efficiently, you’ll be able to tap into those reserves to run for the bus, do manual labor, keep up with your kids around the playground, and basically just do all the things you need to do.

The benefits don’t end there. Because metabolic conditioning is high energy by design, you’ll be burning a lot of calories. By training harder, longer, or adding resistance into the mix, you can also create an oxygen deficit that forces your body to burn calories for hours after working out. This is known as EPOC (post-exercise oxygen consumption), and it’s your body’s way of getting itself back to its pre-workout state.

Want more movement advice from the experts?

Luke Zocchi

Chris Hemsworth may wield the hammer, but it’s his personal trainer Luke Zocchi who cracks the whip. A certified personal trainer, Luke is renowned for his fast and efficient training methods, using weights and bodyweight to get maximum results in minimum time. He’ll also show you how to fuel your training with quick, easy and healthy recipes.

Luke Zocchi

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