Are you doing interval training the right way???


With the sudden surge in fad “gyms” popping up everywhere essentially promoting nothing more than high intensity cardiovascular training with the so called “ORANGE” zone, it’s critical to understand the principle fundamentals and foundations to determine what truly is right for your body, not just a surge of endorphins that makes you temporarily “feel good”.
Cardio, everyone dreads it. That grueling 30min-1 hour long bore-athon all in hopes of burning those few extra calories to be able to loose some excess belly fat. This was always the methodology and approach to cardiovascular training til a Japanese researcher came along named Dr. Izumi Tabata. His philosophy was to maximize an athletes performance in a the most minimal period of time. Blending both muscle conditioning anaerobic exercise(without oxygen), and aerobic(with oxygen). This was to help accelerate an athletes performance abilities and recovery rates, all while promoting a fat burning effect in the periods of rest due to the accelerated heart rate. His original theory focused around the 20/10 method. 20 secs of all out intensity, followed by 10 secs of absolute rest. This would be completed for a total of 8 go rounds which equated to a minimalistic 4 min workout.

This method proved to be incredibly effective from not only the athletic performance and cardiovascular side of things, but from a body transformation ability due to muscle growth and fat loss combined.
Now the dirty truth about the ever so over-hyped and beloved high intensity interval training techniques shoved down the throats of new fitness enthusiasts.
Dr. Tabata knew that prolonged periods of intense physical exertion would lead to greater cell damage rather than positive which was the reasoning for his minimalistic approach, and the muscles being torn down at such an accelerated rate.
“HIIT” a. k. a. High intensity interval training we see to day is long rigorous 45min- 1 hour of maximum effort and exertion. Example being Sprint 1 min, jog 30 secs, and doing such for 30 mins. While you may feel as if you’re doing more by sweating like a raging hurricane, the reality is that 30 mins would’ve been much better off using the low intensity steady state method a. k. a. LISS method. The maximum period of time one should commit to a high intensity interval training routine is 10-15 mins as the body is going to utilize more stored muscle energy such as Creatine, ATP, and stored glycogen for energy during the explosive sections of the routine. Once those stores start to run low in a time of high intensity it’s chemically easier for your body to convert your muscle to energy rather than converting stored fat. This also means use the original definition outlined in Tabata, and come to complete rest between periods of high intensity.
Well you may be thinking “there’s no way….” well yes there is it’s called Oxidative fat metabolism. What does this mean? It means you technically burn more stored fat while you’re sleeping rather than doing HIIT. Now I say that with gentle sarcasm mixed a slight truth as your heart rate sustains a consistent rhythmic beat for many hours at a time.
Aerobic activity is a conditioning of the heart with an emphasis on the utilization of oxygen uptake and delivery to the muscles to effectively convert energy within the muscles. This means you’re not having to tap into the good stored energy within the muscles such as listed above, and it allows your body to more efficiently convert fat into energy to be burned. This is what we often refer to our fat burning zone.
It’s important folks know LISS will always remain supreme to HIIT in regards to fat metabolism. On the other hand HIIT (Tabata) will always burn more calories, some good(muscle energy) and some bad (fat). The key to burning more fat during HIIT is keep your rest intervals to an absolute rest, and make sure you keep an eye on the clock and don’t exceed 15mins.
It’s equally important to address protein delivery following any cardio…. FEED YOUR MACHINE!

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