Anaerobic training is exercise to develop short-term high intensity performance. Anaerobic means without oxygen. Activities such as jumping, sprinting, and weightlifting use this type of energy system. In contrast, sustained exercise performed at a lower intensity taps the aerobic system.
When athletes train anaerobically, their bodies get better at supplying quick energy from two different chains of energy production: the ATP-PC (adenosine triphosphate-phosphocreatine) and the lactic acid system.
When activity lasts for under 10 seconds – about long enough to run the 100m for some – the ATP-PC system is in full force. After about 5-10 seconds of activity without oxygen, lactic acid begins to form. When activity stops, these are restored very quickly.
Anaerobic exercise consists of brief intense bursts of physical activity, such as weightlifting and sprints, where oxygen demand surpasses oxygen supply.
While aerobic exercise relies on oxygen, anaerobic exercise is fueled by energy stored in your muscles through a process called glycolysis. Glycolysis is a method by which glycogen is broken down into glucose, also known as ‘sugar’ and is converted into energy. Glycolysis occurs in muscle cells during anaerobic exercise without the use of oxygen in order to produce energy quickly, thus producing lactic acid, which causes your muscles to fatigue.
Lactic acid is a by-product of glycolysis and forms when your body breaks down glucose for energy when oxygen is low. Participation in regular anaerobic exercise will help your body tolerate and eliminate lactic acid more efficiently.
Benefits of Anaerobic exercise:
In addition to helping your body handle lactic acid effectively, anaerobic exercise has great benefits for your overall health.
Builds and maintains lean muscle mass.
Protects your joints. Increased muscle strength and muscle mass
helps protect your joints, which can protect you from injury.
Boosts metabolism. Anaerobic exercise helps boost metabolism because it helps build and maintain lean muscle. Lean muscle mass is metabolically active, so the more lean muscle mass you have, the more calories you will burn.
Increases bone strength and density. Anaerobic activity will increase the strength and density of your bones more than any other type of exercise, therefore decreasing your risk of osteoporosis.
Improves your energy. Your body relies on glycogen stored in your muscles as energy. Regular anaerobic exercise increases your body’s ability to store glycogen, giving you more energy during intense physical activity.
Increases sports performance. Regular anaerobic exercise increases strength, speed and power, which will ultimately help to improve sport performance.
Dr. Manish Deepak Pardeshi