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I am working on loosing weight (which I have been succeeding so far), but I am reaching a point where I feel that my metabolism is slowing down and my weight loss may be stagnating. I am trying a new strategy along with my current exercise routine, which is to add small (aprox. 10min) workouts throughout my day (that is, one in the morning, two in the afternoon, etc.).

My question is: is this kind of strategy known? Are there other similar strategies that can help keep my metabolism high throughout the day?

I also welcome any scientific articles in this issue. Thanks!

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  • The strategy is certainly well-known, but I don't know if there are specific studies regarding additional micro-workouts during the day. It'd be an interesting (and difficult) study at the metabolic level. The body doesn't immediately return to homeostasis after a workout, though, so it'd have some impact. The body adapts to stress loads; the sense of your "metabolism slowing down" may or may not be "real" in a metabolic sense--it could just be you've adapted to your current stress levels. The way to track it is to see if it works :) Aug 17 '21 at 18:21
  • Hi @DaveNewton, thanks for your comment! Yes, I guess it would be difficult, but it would be so interesting though! Yesterday, I really felt the impact of small workouts during the day. Not only I burned more calories, but I also felt more motivated at the gym. I felt with much more energy and consequently burned more at the regular workout. It seems to be working, at the end of the day I had spent 500kcal more than the day before due to the micro-workouts and extra energy at the gym. I will keep on doing that to see where it takes me. :-)
    – MLLDantas
    Aug 18 '21 at 16:52
  • By the way, I really feel like I am burning less doing the same things I was doing a few months ago, when I started to work on my weight loss. I follow everything using a fitbit watch. I really think it helps me to know how much I spend and how much I consume in detail, so I have control over calorie deficit. But the calorie burn rate seems to be slightly lower than a while ago. If not, then I'm just accelerating my activity towards my goal. It's a win-win!
    – MLLDantas
    Aug 18 '21 at 16:58
  • The body adapts to new workloads and becomes more efficient for a variety of reasons :) Aug 18 '21 at 17:31
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There is an effect named excessive post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) sometimes called "afterburn". This effect refers to the elevation in metabolism (rate that calories are burned) after an exercise session ends. The increased metabolism is linked to increased consumption of oxygen. The intensity of exercise appears to be the most significant factor in boosting post-exercise metabolism (1).

So the key seems to be to get the heart rate up. For instance doing some intense minutes of burpees troughout the day should be ideal.

Asides from loosing weights, your strategy with micro-workouts trough the day has some other substantial benefits:

  • Sitting for prolonged time harms your posture and health. Breaking up the sitting as often as possible is beneficial.
  • Higher heart rate means more oxygen and nutrients to the brain. This is healthy for your brain and leads to better mental focus.

(1) The Afterburn Effect: Understanding the Science of Epoc

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    Thanks so much Andy! Yes, the other benefits are true as well, we should not forget to keep moving throughout the day. Staying inactive for long is also linked to a higher chance of having a heart attack (and other nasty diseases)!
    – MLLDantas
    Aug 18 '21 at 17:00

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