Are you interested in rapid fat loss without spending a dozen hours in the gym each week? Have you tried everything else in the book, from cardio to supplements to worse, and you just can’t lose the body fat? Perhaps you have not yet shocked your body with an intense enough workout. But how can you train with the required super insane intensity, and keep that kind of effort sustained for the 20 to 35 minutes it really takes to lead to fat loss? The answer, of course, lies in the use of high intensity interval training workouts. They allow you to push yourself like never before with a series of mini-attacks and mini-rest periods, together leading to a terrific situation involving fat loss and potential muscle gain.
This kind of training is catching on like wildfire. The simplest explanation is that it involves a workout in which your heart rate becomes elevated – then is allowed to return to normal (or near-normal) range. Then, you push it right back up again! Training in this fashion will require you to forget everything you’ve ever learned about cardiovascular training. Don’t think you have to be the “cardio freak” running 9 miles per hour on the elliptical for 40 minutes. Rather, you have to be the trainer who pushes it to the limit – then lets his or her body return to a normal heart rate, if only briefly. These recovery periods allow your heart rate to recover, in addition to allowing you to catch your breath a bit and breaking up some residual lactic acid which is accumulating in the bloodstream.
Essentially, the basic tenet of high intensity interval training workouts is that you train very hard for 1 minute, then very lightly for 1 minute. You are at maximum training intensity for one minute, then just laid back catching your breath for one minute. Without this minute of “rest”, you won’t be able to reach that same high level the next time you attempt to push it. So you have to rest, even if that doesn’t come naturally to you!
Get on the track and sprint as fast as you can safely run, for 60 seconds. This is the actual high intensity training period. You will never push yourself to absolute training failure, where you are lifting or running or exercising at dangerous levels. Just on the cusp of danger is the ideal area! A safe track for running (if this is your cardio activity of choice) will work just fine.
The recovery phase of high intensity training for fat loss will be walking for 1 minute, during your recovery period. It’s not rocket science. You just ran within an inch of your life for 60 seconds. So you’ll probably need a good 60 seconds for rest before you try it again. But you will try it again. You may not attain that exact same level of achievement (in terms of calories burned or heart rate achieved) in each successive set, but that won’t matter. You’re pushing yourself like you’ve never pushed yourself – and you will see reductions in aerobic capacity as you move up through the sets.
The bottom line is this: Instead of training at a moderate pace for 40 minutes, you will now be training very hard for 20 minutes, and very lightly for 20 minutes. It’s just that the minutes will be chunked up into 1-minute intervals, repeating and alternating. It’s that simple!
It should be noted that heart rate is not relevant when it comes to actual fat loss in the body. The actual intensity of a workout is what makes a difference in terms of mow much fat you will burn. You will want to create a situation in which your system is stimulated so that your metabolic rate will increase. However, this will not occur for the time you’re in the gym. Rather, this will be the scenario in which your body exists for the following 8 to 10 hours. Your entire system will be elevated, as will the fat burning processes of your body.
Keep in mind that this kind of training will not build muscle. It may even cost you a few pounds of muscle. But what it will do is provide your system with adequate stimulation to burn fat, something that does not come easily to many lifters. So you’ve got to weigh your options and determine which goal is ideal for you. Do you want to get big, or do you want to get ripped? It’s entirely possible to get ripped without using high intensity interval training. However, if you have tried and the other methods have failed, or you just want to get big and ripped as fast as possible, then this may be your best bet!