Many of us are accustomed to spending long hours at the gym–or at least thinking we need to–to get the results we want. This doesn’t have to be the case, and quite frankly, I don’t have time for that anymore since becoming a mom. Thankfully, shorter workouts, like Tabata, can often be more effective than longer ones.
How is that possible, you ask?
The key is doing shorter workouts at a higher intensity as opposed to longer workouts at a moderate intensity. Not only do you get a great workout, but you boost your metabolism for an entire day after!
With the Tabata method, you work HARD for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, then repeat for a total of four minutes. It’s a great boost to add at the end of a workout or you can repeat it a few times for a full 20-minute workout.
In the Tabata class I teach, I usually do 5 minutes of warmup, 4 rounds of Tabata with one minute rests in between (20 minutes) and 5 minutes of cool down. It’s a super effective workout and because of its intensity, it’s best to give it a try when your cardio fitness is such that you’re already comfortable doing about 30 minutes of steady state (one level of intensity for the full workout).
There are modifications that can be made to make it less of an intense workout while you’re still building your fitness level, though, and you’re welcome to start there. It will still be a great workout no matter which version you do.
To make tracking your time easier, download a Tabata Timer App. It’s free and makes it so you don’t have to stare at a clock the whole time.
We all have four minutes to work out in our day, so be sure to pin this Tabata workout for later to have it ready when you need it.
You’ll do each exercise for 20 seconds, rest for 10 and then move to the next one. If you’d like to repeat the four minutes, rest for one minute before going for it again.
Remember to spend a couple of minutes warming up first so that your muscles are good to go!
1. Squat Jumps
Squat low, like you’re sitting back in a chair, keeping your knees behind your toes then jump up, landing softly back into a squat.
Modification: Regular squats without jumping.
2. Speed Skaters
Start standing, then step one foot back behind the other and touch the ground with one hand. Leap to the other side, stepping the opposite foot back behind the other and touch the ground with the other hand.
Modification: Step to the side instead of jumping or do without touching the ground.
3. High Knees
Alternating quickly and keeping the toes pointed down, lift one knee up high, lower, then lift the other one.
Modification: Jog in place.
4. Jump Lunges
Start in a lunge position — front knee behind your toe, back knee in line with your hips, legs hip width apart. Jump up and switch legs, lowering down into a lunge.
Modification: Step into a lunge instead of jumping.
Enjoy the workout, which much like our app is great for those of us on the go!
Do you spend hours at the gym or are your workouts short and sweet?
I originally wrote this post for Calio.