When people imagine going to the gym it fills many of them with dread, thinking it has to entail an hour or more slugging your guts out on the treadmill, cross trainer or bike in order to burn enough calories to see the scales drop at the end of the week.
But how wrong they are and how poorly educated this country is. Speak to anyone who has lost a lot of body fat or any decent Personal Trainer and ask them the very best and scientifically way to burn body fat fast and effectively and with minimal time in the gym and they will all say……interval training.
Interval training along with heavy compound resistance training is a phenomenal way of burning lots of fat with only a short time in the gym each week. In fact some studies even showed people who undertook intervals rather than slow steady state cardio (sssc) burnt off 9 times more calories.
So what is interval training and who can do it? Well that’s the beauty of intervals, anybody can do it! Literally anybody as it can be adapted to an individuals exercise history, experience, fitness and injuries.
Interval training involves slow periods of exercise with short bursts (intervals) of speed to speed up the heart rate but not for long. This means you will raise your metabolic rate due to the increases of intensity and is manageable for everybody due to the ‘recovery’ periods.
An example would be a 15 second sprint then a 30 second recovery repeated 10 times. This of course can be adapted to the individual as it is very challenging and the main obstacle is the mental challenge of getting motivated to do it, but when you give someone the choice, 15 minutes cardio or 45 minutes? Then the motivation is easy especially when the 15 minutes of cardio will yield greater results!
A beginner would be advised to start on a piece of kit that supports their body such as a bike or x-trainer, then once their basic strength and fitness increases they can move onto more challenging pieces of kit such as treadmills and rowing machines. It is also extremely important to ensure a thorough warm up is completed before high intensity training is undertaken.
So interval training can yield excellent fat loss results and in limited workout time and not only that but due to the increased yet manageable intensity will produce better fitness levels, lung function and stamina and decrease in blood pressure and stress levels.
But….yes there is a but, it is important to remember that interval training is much harder on the body and isn’t for everybody, if someone doesn’t have the mental strength or motivation to do intervals to lose fat, but would prefer longer slower cardio then this can still be beneficial as they are more likely to continue a training regime that they feel they can cope with.
The point of this article is train smarter not longer!