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Arts and Entertainment Monday, Feb. 17, 2014 6 years ago

Four-minute fitness

by: Patti Waller

It's a scenario we've all experienced: Your schedule gets jammed up and you decide to skip the gym, but you know you would feel better doing a short workout versus no workout at all. Solution:  Tabata Training.

Tabata is a style of interval training developed by Dr. Izumi Tabata at the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo, Japan.

Tests were conducted with groups of athletes that compared moderate intensity training (such as long-distance running) to high-intensity interval training (like sprinting). It was a method used to train the speed skating team.

The results were amazing; the athletes doing the high-intensity intervals increased their overall aerobic and anaerobic capacity, their VO2 max and resting metabolic rate, and it also helped them burn more fat post workout. This training style results in a leaner physique much more quickly than its moderate-intensity training counterparts.

The Formula:

Exercise in eight 20-second rounds with 10 seconds of rest in between each round for a total of four minutes. A Tabata timer app is available for iPhones and iPads.


Squat jumps

  • Squat jump for 20 seconds.
  • Rest for 10 seconds.
  • Sprint for 20 seconds.
  • Rest for 10seconds.
  • Alternate between the two until the four minutes is completed.

Tabatas can be used within a workout as well, but when you're in a time crunch, one or two tabatas with some pushups, dips and planks will keep you on the fitness track.

Ready, set TABATA!



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