The prospect of beginning a new exercise regime can be daunting. Getting the necessary gear, finding a convenient gym and working exercise into your already-packed schedule are not easy tasks. But what if finding the time to exercise was easier than you thought? With interval training, it can be.
Interval training is the practice of swapping out long, low-intensity stretches of exercise for small, quick bursts of intense activity alternated with intervals of light activity. Switching between low-intensity and high-intensity intervals makes your body work harder and burn more calories than if you worked out at a consistent, moderate pace. Basically, interval training improves the quality of your workout and cuts your time spent exercising in half.
Instead of spending an hour absentmindedly reading a magazine or watching TV on a treadmill or stationary bike, try spending 15-30 minutes on intense, focused interval work. It’ll feel much more challenging than your usual steady-state cardio, but the time will fly by, and you’ll quickly begin to see significant changes in your body and fitness level.
Interval training provides benefits to both seasoned athletes and those just starting to incorporate exercise into their routine. When compared to other workouts, interval training helps you burn more calories and improve your aerobic abilities. The variety of options when it comes to interval training also means you’ll never get bored.
Perhaps the best part of interval training is there’s little to no preparation or gear required. You can easily participate in an interval workout at a gym, in your neighborhood or even in your own home.
Interval training exercises
Walking/running: Take a walk or run and mix in 30-second bursts of high-intensity speed-walking or sprints. Let your heart rate come down between intervals.
Swimming: Swim the length of the pool six times, resting for 30 seconds between lengths. Increase the number of lengths you swim every two days, and aim to shorten your rest time to 15 seconds.
Rowing: Alternate between rowing hard for two minutes and resting for one minute. Complete ten cycles of that routine. Increase your intense intervals over time to three minutes of rowing and one minute of rest.
Of course, high-intensity workouts like this aren't for everyone. Before you begin any new exercise routine, be sure to consult with your healthcare provider to make sure it's right for you.
Posted: 11/06/2015 by
Filed under: exercise, fitness, interval, training