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Metabolic Resistance Training

Metabolic Resistance Training (MRT) is a type of high intensity strength training that has multiple benefits in comparison to isolated strength exercises.

In simple terms, MRT involves performing a circuit of compound, combination exercises (utilizing multiple muscle groups at one time) with little rest between exercises. We'll take a closer look at the details of this type of workout in just a moment.

But first, why should you consider this type of workout? Let's dive in:

  1. This type of workout builds muscle while simultaneously boosting cardiovascular conditioning in a way that most aerobic exercises cannot. Some studies have shown anaerobic exercise such as this can increase V02 max beyond what an aerobic program can do.

  2. The "metabolic" part of this workout is the coolest aspect for me! When performed correctly, research has shown that this type of exercise program stimulates the release of growth hormones, which not only helps build muscle, but tells your body to start oxidizing and burning fat. It's a win-win.

  3. Continuing on the metabolic theme, this high intensity strength workout also tends to burn more calories per hour AND continues to burn calories up to 24 hours after the workout is complete due to the phenomenon of EPOC (i.e. excess post-exercise oxygen consumption.)

  4. This type of workout is intense but short--usually taking just 30 minutes to complete.

While there's a lot more science behind this type of approach, I think you can begin to sense the amazing benefits of this specific type of conditioning.

But here's the catch-- this type of workout needs to be performed correctly to reap the maximum benefits. The weight needs to be an appropriate heavy amount, you need to be pushing yourself to a rate of perceived effort in the 8 to 9 region, and there needs to be little rest between exercises.

So what might a beginning MRT workout look like?

Start with 4 compound, combination exercises that involve multiple muscle groups. Perform anywhere between 10 to 15 repetitions of each exercise with very little rest in between the different exercises.

Once the circuit is complete, rest 2 -5 minutes then repeat the circuit again for a total of 3-4 times.

I love to structure MRT workouts, especially for runners, because in a short amount of time we can help improve VO2 max, overall strength and also hone in on injury prevention muscle training.

What's not to love?!

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