Health & Fitness: Turn Up Your Spring/Summer Workout With Tabata

By Ashley Aragona on May 25, 2013 from Health & Fitness via

If you’re like me, even though the days get longer in the spring, so does my list of things to do. In addition, with warmer weather come cook outs, lawns to be tended to, and play dates to be had; so time management becomes very important to me. Sure, 2-hour workouts during the cold winter months are great, but during spring/summer I want to make the most of my day time and get my workout completed so I can enjoy the beautiful weather while it’s here.
So with the time change, I also do a workout change. I switch up my workouts in the spring/summer and incorporate a lot of Tabata. Ta... what?? Tabata.
Tabata was developed by Japanese scientist Dr. Izumi Tabata and a team of researchers from the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo.What Tabata and his team found when studying two groups of athletes; (one training at a moderate level, 5 days a week for 1 hour a day, and the other at a higher intensity level for 4 days a week for 4 minutes) was that group two increased both their anaerobic and aerobic system more than group one who was working out 5 days a week for 1 hour a day. The rest… is history. You may have also heard of HIIT- High Intensity Interval Training? Same Concept- it’s all about getting the most bang for your buck.
Thebasic premise of this workout methodology is to workout as hard as you can, but in short bursts. For example, biking for 20 seconds as hard as you can (and I mean 100% max exertion) followed by a rest period, maybe 10 seconds, and then you repeat that exercise. Now, that’s the basic premise of Tabata, but different trainers and instructors will create different workouts with this method. For example, a sample tabata workout that would take about 20 minutes could go like this:
  1. 20 Seconds of Jumping Jacks
  2. 20 Second Mountain Climbers
  3. 20 Seconds Burpees
  4. 20 Seconds Jump Squats
  5. 20 Seconds PushUps
  6. 20 Seconds Plank
Do exercises 1-6 straight through with ten second rests in between. Rest one minute then go again
Do exercise 1 for 20 seconds, followed by a ten second rest. Repeat that exercise 8 times then rest the final time for 1 minute before moving on to exercise 2. And so on…
See, why I love tabata? It’s fast, effective, versatile and can be done anywhere. Well, almost anywhere, I don’t recommend doing a tabata workout on a train or plane.
Items you’ll need for this exercise?
  • Notebook – To track progress and exercises
  • Stopwatch or Tabata app (many are free on your smart phone)
Also, possibly items to have on hand include weights, a mat, and a jump rope.
For the most bang, try to do exercises that incorporate large muscle groups as well as more than one muscle group at a time.
You may be thinking right now, “there’s no way I can get a good workout in, in 20 minutes” All I have to say is don’t knock it till you try it. I recommend using a trainer if you are just getting started, but there are also some great sites and videos out there that use this methodology. Remember though, in order to reap the benefits you need move it and go as hard as you can go. When I say "as hard as you can go," I mean 100-percent maximal intensity. By the end of the workout you should feel like you can’t do another rep, jump another time, heck you should feel like you need to lay down and go to sleep!
So until next time, here’s to staying healthy, keeping goals, and enjoying the good life that comes with spring/summer sunshine and a healthy mind and body.
Yours in Health and Fitness,

Connect Bridgeport
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