Ever wanted to get a whole workout done in just minutes? Well there’s a realistic and effective way to do just that! Tabata training involves short bursts of 100% work followed by very short periods of rest. The rest periods are just long enough to allow you to recover so that you can go back to using 100% of your energy.
These intervals are extremely short: 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest. Typical Tabata training requires 4 rounds of the work/rest combo (a total of 4 minutes).
How Tabata training works
Dr. Izumi Tabata and his research team conducted a study that compared moderate intensity workouts to high intensity workouts. The moderate intensity folks exercised 5 days per week for about an hour a day, while the high intensity guys exercised 4 days per week for just 4 minutes and 20 seconds each day.
What were the results? It turns out that BOTH test groups saw an increase in their aerobic capacities. So, they saw improved endurance. But the impressive part was that the high intensity group also saw an increase in their anaerobic capacities. In other words, they were also able to build muscle and burn fat. That’s all from just 4 minutes and 20 seconds of work per day!
When done correctly, you can build more muscle and burn more calories during a Tabata workout than you would if you completed a moderate-intensity 30 minute workout. To make this even more effective, a typical Tabata workout includes several cycles that allow you to get a great workout done in a short amount of time.
How does Tabata training help you overcome your workout rut?
Because Tabata workouts are short and efficient, it’s easy to get yourself motivated to spend this time at the gym. Also, if you’ve been on the treadmill or elliptical for several days a week without seeing any results, it’s likely that your body has gotten used to the workouts you’re doing. Adding unexpected high-intensity workouts into your week will get your body out of its normal routine and allow you to go back to burning calories quickly.
Your ideal 4 minute workout
Tabata works with just about every kind of exercise, although some movements work better than others. Bodyweight exercises, sprints, biking, kettlebell exercises and core movements can all be used to give you a great Tabata workout.
This is a great at home workout that will get you sweaty and tired and give you a great introduction to Tabata training. The whole workout will take you roughly 16 minutes to do and you will burn a ton of calories. And BONUS: just like HIIT workouts and other circuit training workouts, you’ll keep burning calories after your workout is over!