Interval workouts are one of my favorite ways to beat workout boredom, plus it helps that these workouts burn a lot of calories in a pretty short amount of time. Sometimes I can get stuck in doing the same types of intervals (30 seconds on 30 seconds off) so I put together a “cheat sheet” with different types of interval workouts to get the creative juices flowing.
There is a tabata breakdown, pyramid breakdown and one of the circuits workout formats I like to use. You can do cardio exercises, strength exercises or a combination of the two for each of these formats, and you’ll see how something as simple as changing the type of interval training you do, will really increase the effectiveness of your workout. Plus, I always find having a new workout motivates me to get to the gym!
It’s always a good idea to try something new and keep your body guessing so I hope this cheat sheet is helpful. I’m really into tabata training lately, but let me know which workout is your favorite!
Tabata protocol is one of the most effective and best fat burning workouts out there. If you don’t believe me you can even read about it here. The best thing about it…you only have to do about 20 minutes of tabata intervals to get the same aerobic benefit and calorie burn as running several miles or slogging through 40 minutes on the elliptical trainer. Now full disclosure, that means this workout if going to be tough and you’re going to sweat…a lot:)
You’ll do 20 seconds of high intensity cardio followed by 10 seconds of rest, then 20 seconds of intense strength moves followed by another 10 seconds of rest. You repeat this pattern for 4 minutes at that’s a tabata protocol.
You only need a pair of dumbbells and you’re good to go, you can even do this workout at home! Get the printable version with exercise descriptions here.Tabata Workout
No need to worry about being bored on the treadmill if you bring this workout with you! There are intervals, sprints and lots of hills making this workout ideal for torching calories and totally toning your legs and glutes. So when it comes time for those incline sprints don’t think of them as intense work intervals think of them as instant butt lifters;)
After a warmup the workout is broken up into three sections: the first section is a powerwalk up a steep hill, the second section is entirely on an incline and alternates jogging and running, the third section alternates sprinting up a hill with walking or jogging. Feel free to do on or two of the sections and if you’re looking for an advanced workout you can try all three. You cal also try adding just one section into your regular jog for a bit of variety.
I love pyramid workouts and if you ever ran track in high school you might remember them (fondly or maybe not so fondly) as ladders. The principle is that you start with a short interval (in this case 20 seconds), climb up the pyramid to the longest interval (50 seconds) and then work your way back down to a short interval again (20 seconds). Take note that all the intervals here are less than a minute:) Not only does this format make the time fly, but it’s also totally motivating to see the intervals get shorter as the end of the workout gets closer!
You don’t need any equipment so just clear some room in your living room, turn on some good music (you can check out a playlist I’m loving here) and you’ll get a full body cardio/toning interval workout!
I love workouts that get you in and out of the gym quickly and this high intensity training (HIIT) tabata training workout does just that. So here is how it works….Tabata protocol has you do 20 seconds of high intensity work followed by 10 seconds of rest and you can do any kind of intense interval from sprints to burpees to pushups. You complete that pattern back and forth for a full four minute block, take a much needed break then put those four minute blocks together to make up an 8, 12, 16 or 20 minute workout.
I teach Tabata training in my classes all the time and everyone loves it since it makes class fly by. (In fact this particular workout is one of the ones I recently taught:) Another great thing, Tabata protocol has been scientifically proven to be the workout that burns the most calories in the least amount of time and high intensity interval training is one of the best ways to flatten your abs and reshape your body. (I’m not kidding, click here and check out the benefits section.) The whole workout is complete in 16 -24 minutes. Oh yeah, and if that wasn’t enough to make you fall in love with Tabata, it also raises your metabolism for the next 24-36 hours so you burn an additional 1o0-150 calorie watching Emily take down the Graysons on Revenge (my new obsession) or someone start a fight on Real Housewives (my forever obsession). Who doesn’t love that?
Here is the workout breakdown
20 second interval: high knees
10 second rest
20 seconds interval: squat press
10 seconds rest
repeat for 4 minutes
Take a break
20 second interval: spider knees
10 seconds rest
20 second interval: plie with an upright row
10 second rest
repeat for 4 minutes
Repeat Round 1 and Round 2 two to three more times to make a 16-24 minute workout