By Jared Anderson
What if you could work out just 20 minutes per day and burn more fat than one hour on a stair stepper or treadmill? Sounds too good to be true, but new research is suggesting otherwise. According to CNN, new research has revealed working out for 20 minutes a day using interval exercise may provide many of the same benefits of much longer workouts done in a conventional “long-duration” style. Many experts recommend children and teenagers exercise one hour a day, and adults get a weekly minimum of two hours and 30 minutes of moderately-intense physical activity. Most people I know simply do not have the time to be working out for one or two hours per day.
A new and exciting study in the Journal of Physiology found about 20 minutes of high-interval training provided the same benefits of longer exercise sessions that focused on endurance training. According to mercola.com, woman who worked out for eight seconds at a high intensity following by 12 seconds of moderate to low intensity burned up to three times more fat during a 15-week period. Experts believe the reason for the increased fat burn is a result of a unique metabolic process. Intermittent sprinting produces a high level of catecholamines, chemicals responsible for allowing more fat to be burned from underneath the skin.
One must be careful and seek the advice of a qualified health care provider, and the assistance of a personal trainer, before getting started in this type of exercise. Heart issues and muscle imbalances can make this type of training dangerous for those who are not properly prepared. I suggest using a bike or elliptical to start. Begin by doing 30 seconds of 80 to 90 percent intensity cardio, followed by 60 to 90 seconds of 60 to 70 percent intensity. Repeat 12 to 15 times. If you have healthy knees and a strong core, feel free to venture out into running sprints.
Always remember to have a well-balanced training program. High-interval training should be done no more than twice a week. Make sure to leave room for a more brisk cardio session, some weight training and even yoga or Pilates. A well-rounded fitness program that changes every four to eight weeks is a sure way to stay lean and healthy for life.