Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tabata Protocol

I'm not a big fan of cardio, especially steady state cardio. I like an intense workout, and I like a quick workout. So high intensity interval training (HIIT) is a good option for me. Never mind that I've never actually done it. In theory, I love it. I've done intervals, but never true HIIT. All I've had is the elliptical and it's not really my best friend. I don't really have anywhere to do HIIT. So I've avoided it.

While I've been doing my research on the New Rules of Lifting (NROL), I started to pay more attention to a form of HIIT known as tabata, which is basically:

warm up

20 seconds all out work
10 seconds rest
repeat 7 times

cool down

That's four minutes, plus warm up and cool down. Sounds easy, right?


The great thing about tabata is you can do body weight exercises (squats, burpees, jump rope, box jump, shadow boxing, etc). We have a 40 pound punching bag hanging in the middle of our living room. Yes, our living room. I wanted to give tabata a try with that. I made it 3 rounds, maybe 3.5, before I gave up. I tried to rationalize, saying it was the bag always swinging away from me that kept me from doing it longer. It was quite the pain in the but, with the bag swinging away. I couldn't concentrate on the movement. So my first tabata attempt was a bust.

However, I am definitely going to try it again, and make it a part of my regular routine. I would like to use some Turbo Jam moves - maybe the strike - in one session, and then squats or burpees in another. I think twice a week is adequate.

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