Endure, Metcon and Speed are three class concepts we’re particularly proud of here at Fiit HQ. You could call them our secret sauce, the ingredients we believe set our users (the Fiit Crew) apart from the chasing pack.
Each one is precisely calibrated to help you develop functional fitness for the real world. That means: more power, more stamina, more resilience and more capacity to handle whatever life throws at you.
That sounds great on paper, right? But what does it mean in reality?
Here we’ve taken a deep dive into each of these three class concepts, explaining how they work, what they look like in the app and how to use them to unlock your full athletic potential.
FIRST, A QUICK SCIENCE RECAP
“Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is the energy currency in our cells that powers all forms of exercise,” says Luke Baden, Fiit’s resident Professor in Pain Cave Survival.
That goes for a gentle vinyasa or full-throttle sprint. “When ATP is used up, it must be replenished,” Luke continues. “It does this by drawing on one of three types of energy system.”
1. The aerobic system. For movement that uses oxygen as the primary fuel source. It’s relied on for slow and steady spells of sustainable exercise, like low-intensity running, cycling and rowing, as well as everyday activity.
2. The anaerobic energy system. For activity that draws on glucose stored in the muscles via a process known as anaerobic glycolysis. This system kicks into gear for more intense bursts of exercise, such as burpees, lasting between 40-60 seconds, and it generates lactate to fuel the muscles.
3. The alactic energy system. Also known as the adenosine-triphosphate and creatine-phosphate (ATP-PC) system. (Catchy, I know). This process relies on the glucose stores in the muscles but doesn’t produce any lactate, so can only fuel the most explosive of all-out efforts, lasting 10 seconds and under. Think your deadlift one-rep max.
“Most fitness content only targets the anaerobic energy system associated with HIIT training, or the aerobic energy system, synonymous with medium-intensity cardio,” says Luke. “If you only work one, no matter how much you improve each workout, you’ll only be tapping into one third of the benefits.”
Fiit, of course, isn’t most fitness content. When we launched connected Air Bike, Tread and Row workouts our team of expert trainers and engineers saw the opportunity to harness the power of all three energy systems. Because to be better at everything, we need to train everything.
The result is Endure, Metcon and Speed. Here’s how each class concept breaks down.
Energy system: Aerobic
Exercise type: Slow burn
Benefit: Increased cardiovascular capacity
Fiit classes: Endure and Nonstop
Example workout: Nonstop #19 with Gede, a 40 minute class including back-to-back bodyweight exercises on the mat for 10, 8, 6 and 4 minute blocks.
Endure workouts target your aerobic energy system. They will typically last for 40 minutes at relatively low-medium intensity, helping build vast reserves of stamina. If you’re a Nonstop class fiend, then this will totally be your jam.
“Developing your aerobic capacity should be a priority when starting out on your fitness journey because it helps build your base,” says Director of Fitness, Gede Foster. “This is your springboard to working your other energy systems efficiently.”
“Endure classes will improve the functioning of your heart and lungs,” adds Luke. “And working out like this also triggers the release of the hormone oxytocin – aka the ‘love drug’ – meaning you’re more likely to feel more connected to others and at ease during the day.”
Energy system: Anaerobic glycolysis (lactic acid system)
Exercise type: Dynamic movements
Benefit: Improved VO2 max + fat loss
Fiit classes: Metcon, Dumbbell Shred and Kettlebell Shred
Example workout: Dumbbell Shred #28 with Courtney, built around 45-60 second rounds of dynamic moves like thrusters, squat jumps and half burpees.
Metcon classes (short for metabolic conditioning) tap into the lactic acid energy pathway. This system kicks in during high-intensity repeated efforts with minimal rest, such as short, sharp Dumbbell Shred workouts.
These workouts are by far the most taxing on your body. “They hurt (in a good way, promise). If done right, they incinerate calories. And they increase your metabolism after class to help you keep torching calories for longer,” says Luke.
“If you learn to love Metcon classes, you’ll also become more efficient at working without oxygen and build invaluable inner resilience in what I like to call ‘The Hurt Locker’.”
Energy system: ATP-PC (alactic system)
Exercise type: Explosive bursts
Benefit: Peak strength + power
Fiit classes: Speed, Push Pull and Circuits
Example workout: Speed #8 with Sean, which combines explosive dumbbell lifts, 6 x 30 second all-out Air Bike sprints and plenty of rest across a 25 minute workout.
Speed classes (formerly known as Sprint in the app) are not for the faint of heart. They ruthlessly laser in on the alactic system, challenging you to produce super short stints of 100% effort, followed by long rest periods to recuperate. In turn, this will help you become more explosive and powerful.
“You need to earn the right to train this way, however,” says Luke. That means laying the foundations of strength and stamina in Endure and Metcon classes so your engine is ready when it’s time to – in the immortal words of Gus Vaz Tostes – ”pull the pin”.
“The added payoff from completing Speed classes,” says Luke, “is your nervous system will become more efficient and you’ll enjoy a healthy dose of dopamine, the reward chemical, once you’re done.”
PUTTING IT INTO PRACTICE
So now you know.
Enhancing your cardiovascular capacity by working all three of these vital energy systems will have huge crossover benefits for your heart, health and happiness.
They will equip you with the tools to push harder for longer, to recover faster between intervals, to climb up that leaderboard and be a more complete, all-conquering hero of functional fitness.
Ready to put this theory into practice? Then we’ve got you covered with Airbike Academy (if you have access to an air bike) or Outlast Pro 1 (for mat and dumbbell based workouts).
“Here endeth the lesson,” says Luke. “Honey Badger, out!”