fitness benefits of metabolic conditioning


Combine strength training and cardio could conjure up thoughts of jogging with a barbell balanced on your back, and who could blame you? After all, our workouts are so often separated into neat categories: cardio or strength training.

Although it might be hard to believe that there is a workout that perfectly combines the two, it seems that we are all in luck. Metabolic conditioning, commonly referred to as metcon, is a style of training that is rapidly gaining popularity. If you follow the fitness influencers on instagram you may already have an idea of ​​the weighted, high-intensity nature of this style of training.

And if you happen to have missed any of the metcon videos – of which there are nearly a million on the app – don’t worry, we’ve assembled fitness experts to reveal it all.

Kimberley Mitchell, personal trainer at OriGym says, “The primary goal of metabolic conditioning is to increase your body’s energy consumption, this form of training is not designed to target specific muscles. It’s much faster than cardio and involves a much more intense workout.

With gym closings leaving people confined to at home and outdoor workouts, many are looking for new ways to make their cardio routines more challenging. Metabolic conditioning just might be the answer, experts say.


If you are no stranger to add weights to HIIT and body weight workoutsmetcon may not seem like much, but Steph Brand, personal trainer and general manager of UN1Tsays it’s unique.

She explains, “Lifting weights under fatigue during a metcon creates a different type of stimulus, which can improve strength and help to build up muscle if done next to a high in proteinBalanced diet.”

Mitchell says, “It definitely promotes the growth of lean body mass because it involves compound exercises performed at a much higher intensity. Multiple muscle groups are targeted at once and forced to adapt to new training conditions, increasing muscle definition.

She advises clients, “If you want to maximize changes in your body, set a new record, or reach a personal best, I always encourage you to try the metcon.”

As your body never quite gets used to the unpredictable style of training, it can stimulate faster muscle growth. According Aimee Victoria Longpersonal trainer and founder of Body Beautiful Method“You can see muscle building results faster by exhausting multiple parts of the body rather than just one area. Metabolic training is thought to help increase growth hormone levels in the body, which means that you will be able to recover faster and build lean muscle tissue.


As with all workouts that raise your heart rate, you can expect increased circulation from the Metcon workout. Where it differs from traditional cardio workouts like functioning Where HITTis the inclusion of weight combined with high reps.

Brand says the benefits of training in this manner go beyond an increase in heart rate. She says, “Metabolic conditioning is fantastic for increasing your GPP – general physical readiness – because it generally uses functional movements that prepare you for everyday life. Combined with the conditioning element, it also makes it easier to perform everyday tasks like climbing stairs or moving objects without feeling exhausted.

The reason metcon improves your body’s range of functions is that you don’t always do a set workout, it’s like a pick and mix of fitness. “It incorporates a number of different styles, including HIIT and cardio, but offers its own benefits as a hybrid style that doesn’t have any preset exercises.” said, PT Kimberley Mitchell.


The good news is that you don’t need to access a Gym or a personal trainer to set up your own metcon workout. For starters’ you can do this style of train with just body weight but I would recommend having a kettlebell or dumbbell set as well as to really reap the rewards,” says Long.

The PT says that formulating your metcon sequence is simplified if you choose six exercises: “You are going to perform each of these exercises one after the other for thirty seconds. Once you’ve completed all six exercises, you get two minutes of rest. It’s a set – complete three to four sets in total.

Once you’ve mastered the basics, she says, “you can take the exercises up to 8 or 10 or increase the time you work on each exercise. You can also play with your rest between sets.

Stone advises beginners to “remember this is only for 20 minutes and the intensity levels are self-determined.”

Regardless of how often you choose to perform during your metcon, Mitchell says to be careful and “start by adding one or two metcon workouts per week and take lots of rest days to avoid burnout. »

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