Have you ever heard of the “Tabata Protocol”? It isn’t a brand new way of performing cardio, but it is rarely discussed in fitness circles anymore. It is really too bad, because I think many people could benefit tremendously by incorporating it into their workout routines.
(The Japanese Speed Skating Team…A force to be reckoned with! They have used the Tabata Protocol to increase their performance for years)
So What is The Tabata Protocol?
The Tabata Protocol is an interval routine developed by the head coach of the Japanese Speed Skating team. It is named after Izumi Tabata, Ph.D., who was the former researcher at Japan’s National Institute of Fitness and Sports. He took the coach’s interval routine and conducted a study on its effectiveness. The results were outstanding to say the least.
So How Is This Interval Routine Different?
Get this…the interval routine is six to eight hard 20 second intervals with only 10 seconds of rest in between! The whole routine only takes 3-4 minutes total. The reason I put “13 minute fat burning workout” as the title is that it is smart to warm up for 5 minutes and cool down for 5 minutes…in reality, the actual work part of the workout is only 3 to 4 minutes.
How on Earth Can 3-4 Minutes Burn Body Fat?
This type of short-term intense interval training has been shown to jack up your metabolic rate for many hours after the workout is finished. You will burn a lot more total calories after the workout is complete. What they also found is that this version of interval training is extremely effective at burning fat without compromising muscle tissue.
This Interval Training Routine is NOT Easy!
Don’t fool yourself into thinking that the Tabata Protocol is easy. Done properly…it is a tough 3 to 4 minutes. It was reported that many of the athletes had to stop at 6 intervals their first few times through the workout. Besides torching body fat, this routine dramatically improves both your aerobic and anaerobic capacity…making you a better athlete.
What Exercises Can You Incorporate Into the Tabata Protocol Workout?
This is what excites me the most about this method of cardio…you have a ton of choices. I think the easiest would be an exercise bike, elliptical or running at a track. It wouldn’t be a very good for the treadmill, because the treadmill takes to long to get up to top speed. You could use almost any piece of cardio equipment that allows you to reach maximum effort quickly. This would be the ideal jump rope routine. Here is a link to a post I did on jumping rope and its benefits: Jump Rope Workout
This Is Also a Great Routine To Become Better in Your Chosen Sport
A Boxer, you could hit the heavy bag for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of rest. A basketball player could jump and try to touch the rim numerous times for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of rest. A swimmer could do a crawl stroke, butterfly stroke, etc…You get the picture. This is actually a good, high-level method to increase athletic performance in many sports.
How You Can Fit This In With Your Regular Workouts
This is an intense form of exercise. I tried it about 3-4 years ago shortly after the study came out…I was a mess! Anyway…I will most likely begin to do it again twice a week, replacing the normal high intensity interval training that I do on those days. It will feel good to have a couple shorter days each week. Obviously, just incorporate this into your workout as you see fit. If you give the Tabata Protocol a shot, please comment below.
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