We all want to reap the benefits of cardiovascular exercise. No matter what modality you prefer, elevating your heart rate is important. It can reduce belly fat, promote brain growth, prevent stress, promote focus, interrupt anxiety, and regulate depression. Often times, we think of cardiovascular training as super-long runs that take up half the day and leave us completely wasted afterwards. While there’s a point and purpose to that kind of steady-state training, it’s not the only way to get a good workout in.
Sometimes there’s just enough time for a workout. What if I told you that, in just eight minutes, you could see similar gains that are comparable to 60 minutes of steady-state exercise? You’d more than likely give it a chance to see what it’s all about!
Alright – here’s the story: Dr. Izumi Tabata, a physician and researcher from Japan, had a group of varsity athletes perform an interval training routine that had been previously used by the Japanese national speed skating team.
Tabata and his team conducted research on two groups of athletes. The first group trained at a moderate intensity level while the second group trained at a high-intensity level. The moderate intensity group worked out five days a week for a total of six weeks; each workout lasted one hour. The high-intensity group worked out four days a week for six weeks; each workout lasted four minutes and 20 seconds (with 10 seconds of rest in between each set).
The results; Group 1 had increased their aerobic system (cardiovascular), but showed little or no results for their anaerobic system (muscle). Group 2 showed much more increase in their aerobic system than Group 1, and increased their anaerobic system by 28 percent.