It is 6:30 am, you have been jogging for 30 minutes and you still have 30 more to go. you start to get bored as the thoughts of the day's obligations start clouding your mind.
You wish you could just drop it and leave for work, but you have to continue, you have to maintain those cardio benefits.
Well you do not have to. there is a short answer to your quest, as short as 8 minutes.
That answer is Tabata, a type of HIIT (high intensity interval training)
The technique is really simple:
- Start with 2 minutes of warm up to get the blood flowing and your muscles and joints warmed up.
- Sprint for 20 seconds at your maximum effort.
- Jog for 10 seconds.
- Repeat 8 times in 4 minutes.
- Then cool down for 2 minutes.
That's it, 8 minutes total.
Now I can hear your skeptical remarks, you were conditioned to believe that more is always better, and when it comes to weight loss you definitely think that much, much more is better.
I know it looks like such a brief workout, but it is really challenging, I know some people who would rather jog purely for 2 hours than pushing themselves to their limit for 8 minutes.
but the advantages of HIIT are not just measured by the clock arms, according to some researchers. you still can
get all the benefits of cardio
- Studies that show HIIT can significantly reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Aerobic benefits: can you believe that 2.5 hours (divided over many days of course) of HIIT can produce biochemical changes in the muscles equivalent to 10.5 hours of endurance training? well studies proved it.
- If you are a seasoned athlete, Tabata has another advantage for you. As you already know, exceeding your previous records gets harder over time. but it was found that HIIT can get you past that sticking point
- Metabolic benefits: it has always been believed that fat burning starts after 30 minutes of exercise, so you have to take it easy to be able to exceed those 30 minutes and complete the required duration. But the important factor in fat burning is not just the total amount of calories you burn during the workout, it is the elevated resting metabolic rate afterwards, a point that is very much in favor of HIIT which was shown to elevate metabolic rate and oxygen consumption for 24 hours after the workout.
- HIIT also significantly lowers insulin resistance.a big bonus for a nation with 30% living with diabetes.
- It also causes skeletal muscle adaptations that result in enhanced skeletal muscle fat oxidation and improved glucose tolerance.
And do not forget the time you save.
HIIT or Tabata however you name it is a good alternative to traditional endurance training.