Feel Great

Post-Spring Break Edition: How To Keep The Body You Worked So Hard For

by Rachel Tipovski, blogger

(Courtesy of collegecures.com)

The worst part about the gym is the time commitment. Taking an hour or more to spend at the gym, watching the minutes pass and calories melt off of you is boring and exhausting. Thankfully, there is a way to spend less time at the gym without sacrificing fitness. The secret is interval training.

Interval training is a workout in which you alternate periods of high intensity exercises with low intensity recovery periods. The result: a shorter period of time and more calories burned. Interval training is a well-known exercise that is beneficial for weight loss, rehabilitation, reduction of heart disease and cardiovascular build-up, according to a study by the New England Journal of Medicine. There are many different interval-training methods, there is no known “one size fits all” optimal solution, the study says.

Interval training was once designed to help train Olympic athletes. In recent years, many experts have begun to advise people to take up this kind of exercise. Experts say not only will it save you time in the gym, but it is also a smarter way to exercise. High intensity interval training is twice as effective as normal exercise, experts at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology say.

When compared to people on a normal exercise routine, like jogging, researchers have found that doing interval training can double their endurance, improve oxygen use and strength by more then 10 percent and speed by at least five percent. These movements should make you a little out of breath but you should not feel exhausted or be gasping for air. The work outs should consist of a few short minutes of intense movement followed by a few minutes of less rigorous activity.

Try out interval training by increasing your daily jog with something like this:

  • Warm up for five minutes
  • 30 seconds sprint/ 30 seconds recover
  • 1 minute sprint/ 1 minute recover
  • 2 minute sprint/ 2 minute recover
  • 4 minute sprint/ 4 minute recover
  • 2 minute sprint/ 2 minute recover
  • 1 minute sprint/ 1 minute recover
  • 30 second sprint/ 30 second recover

High interval training gives you the best of both worlds: blasting more calories in less time.