Written By: Tim Davis, Wellness Strategy Manager
Interval training is a great form of exercise for all fitness levels. If there is unfamiliarity with what interval training is, it’s simply alternating bursts of intense activity with intervals of lighter activity. An example of interval training for a beginner may just start with a brisk walk on a treadmill for one minute and then slowing things down with a leisurely walk for one minute. If someone is more advanced, they may do 30 seconds of Battle Rope Slams, and then alternate the slams with 30 seconds of a plank or body weight squats. The key with interval training is increased exercise intensity. While “intensity” can be a scary word, all that exercise intensity refers to is how hard one’s body is working toward exercise. And no matter what your fitness level is, there are benefits to adding interval training to your workout regimen. Let’s focus on three quick reasons to up the intensity:
- More calories are burned! Many people exercise to lose weight. The math is easy here, burn more calories than you take in and there is weight loss. With an increased intensity, this gives you a great chance to burn as many precious calories as possible.
- You can use your time more effectively! Aerobic and anaerobic capacity can improve by adapting to a form of interval training. While the biggest benefit is increased heart and lung health, another positive is that you will be able to be more productive with your time. You may be able to accomplish as much in 30 minutes as you used to in 45 minutes, saving yourself 15 minutes in your day. If you don’t want the extra 15 minutes back, using that same 45 minutes you already had earmarked, you will be able to accomplish even more by being more efficient.
- You are less likely to get bored! Not everyone wants to run a mile on a treadmill. It can feel long and unsatisfying. But running for 1 minute and then focusing on a different exercise can change the ball game. It keeps something that can seem monotonous to be perceived as more fun and enjoyable. Another side benefit to this method of training — you’re more likely to stick to your workout program. Being bored is not a good recipe for long term success.
Try it out for yourself and see the benefits of this exciting strategy for working out!