After sweating through an intense “pre-turkey-burner” workout this week I thought about the different energy systems in the body. In order to fuel muscles for activity, we move back and forth between these systems as needed. If we break into a full sprint (or engage in ballistic strength training) we are calling upon our stored reservoirs of sugar, oxygen, and some interesting energy storage units called creatine phospate and adenosine triphosphate. We use up these resources quite quickly, and after anywhere between 10 and 45 seconds we begin to fatigue…often experiencing great discomfort in the process between gasping for air and enduring intense muscular heat. Research into this “anaerobic” (without oxygen from the lungs or blood) system has shown that tapping it periodically can improve fitness in interesting ways. To learn more, check out this article from one of the more well-respected professional fitness organizations in the United States, IDEA.


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