So yesterday I put the EPOC theory to the test.
First I got on the StairMaster machine. It's like walking up stairs. After about 5 minutes my heart rate was in the 150 beats per minute. I wanted to stop (jelly legs, short of breath) but carried on for 20 minutes. My heart rate rose to the late 150s-165 range. It was really hard. I burned 330 calories in 20 minutes.
Then I did 20 minutes walking on the treadmill. Not uphill. Just flat. 6 kilometres per hour - quite a good steady pace. My heart rate levelled out at around 125. I could sing and carry on a conversation but breathed a bit heavier and could feel my heart elevated a bit. It was pretty easy. I burned 130 calories in 20 minutes.
So therein lies the crux of the EPOC theory. Work hard. Burn more calories. Raise your metabolism for longer.