If you're spending 30-45 minutes a day on the treadmill, or gauging the quality of your workout by how many calories the elliptical machine states that you've burned, then I have bad news for you
you are slowing your fat loss results considerably. Just say NO to cardio.
The quickest and most efficient way to burning fat is not to work out in the "fat burning" zone or to do endless amounts of long, slow, boring cardio, but instead to ramp up your workout intensity.
And the most proven way to do that is with short burst exercise in the form of interval training.
Now some of you may be familiar with traditional forms of interval training where you train on a bike or a treadmill following a 30/60 or 45/90 second ratio.
In the case of 30/60 for example, you would do 30 seconds of hard activity followed by 60 seconds of light activity and repeat that up to six times.
This type of interval training is perfectly okay and when added to your strength training workout, you will see some incredible results.
However, some of you may like to vary things up a little bit and so I'd like to share with you 2 alternative forms of interval training that are just as wickedly effective, can be done in your home, and will keep you motivated to come back for more.
1. 5-Minute Bodyweight Squats
Here you will do as many bodyweight squats as you possibly can in 5 minutes. Feel free to break this up into however many sets and reps you need. For example, you can do sets of 10 reps, 20 reps, or simply until you cannot go anymore. Then take a rest and repeat.
Each week try to do more squats in the same amount of time. This may sound easy, but trust me; it can be as difficult as you make it!
2. Short Burst Squats
I personally recommend a Gymboss timer for this type of training, but it isn't essential.
So, for the bodyweight interval training you will do as many bodyweight squats as you can for 20 seconds and then hold the bottom position for 10 seconds, then repeat your squats for 20 seconds, and then hold at the bottom for 10 etc. Repeat these intervals for 8 rounds.
Alright, so those are just two of the countless ways in which you can include interval training into your workouts that will burn fat faster and help you avoid spending more time than necessary in the gym.
Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS