Four Freaking Minutes

I've been reading a legion of articles on Pilates since I've taken a dogged liking to it the past couple of weeks.  I've learned enough to confirm for myself that this is a form of exercise I want to stick with long-term.  Wouldn't it be cool if I were doing all this research to help me become better in my practice, to make it more effective, to share this wealth of information with others?  Indeed.  But I'm not that thoughtful (my only flaw, I swear!).  I was looking for an article to tell me that a Pilates practice that didn't include cardio was A-OK.  Couldn't find one.  Gah.  One break, guys--that's all I need!  A cupcake that flattens your stomach.  Cookie dough that makes your hair shiny.  Ice cream that increases your political breadth.  Something!  Ugh.

It's time to get back into the heart-pumping, sweat-pouring cardio game, I suppose.  But it's cold out--really freaking cold.  Especially in the morning, which is the only time I'm able to work out (It's a mental thing, but it's still a thing).  There's no way I'm leaving my bed early in the morning to brave the elements for a lousy run.  Let me reiterate for those thinking, You may get the motivation to do it sometimes!  Cold weather is really quite invigorating!: There's. No. Way.

The treadmill has become my best friend these past couple of days.  A warm and cozy run--me likey.  But I've only been running for twenty minutes, three times per week.  I know, I know--but before everyone starts hitting me with the "But you don't even start to burn fat until after thirty minutes!" or the "Experts say you need more than three days of exercise per week!" let me explain...

Tabata.  That's it.  End of story.

Tabata is a high intensity interval training (HIIT) method founded in Japan by Izumi Tabata to increase the performance of Japanese Olympians.  Here's the gist: you pick a cardio activity (spinning, chasing an ice cream truck, etc.) and go as hard as you can (for real--as hard as you can) for 20 seconds.  Then you rest for 10 seconds.  Lather, rinse, repeat seven more times.  This adds up to four minutes. At the end of the four minutes, if you can still see straight you're doing it wrong.

The thing about the Tabata method is that it's touted for increasing your aerobic capacity, anaerobic capacity, resting metabolic heart rate and burns more fat than a 60-minute aerobic workout.


I think I've finally caught my break.  Guys...I'd like to introduce you to the cupcake that flattens your stomach.  You're welcome.


Find out more about Tabata here and here.  Okay and here, too.

Filed under: Lifestyle, Workouts

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