It’s easy to come up with a million reasons NOT to take care of your body.
It’s too cold outside. (Put on more clothes)
It’s expensive. (Eating at home is less expensive than eating out)
The kids are cranky. (Put them to bed and get moving)
I think I’m getting sick. (Nothing zaps infection like a good sweat session and plant based foods – except for maybe drugs, but you get the point)
I don’t feel like it. (Yea? Well your body doesn’t feel like getting diabetes but there it is)
I worked out yesterday, I should be good for a few days. (That’s dumb)
I’m not a morning person. (Nobody is, and if they say they are it’s a lie. If you work out in the morning, things can’t “come up” later in the day that will sideline your workout)
My ______ hurts. (Unless something is swollen, bleeding or has fallen off, you are fine. Suck it up)
The drive-through is right HERE. (Keep driving and it will be way over there. Go home)
I don’t have enough time. (Do you have 4 minutes? I thought so)
That last one caught your eye, didn’t it? No, I didn’t create Buffed, Beautiful and Breakfast, the healthy cooking sequel to Buffed Beautiful & Bitchin’ – though I wish I did because I would probably be rich and could buy all of the legwarmers my little heart desired. Ahhh, the possibilities.
If you have 4 minutes, you have enough time. I learned this recently when I was introduced to Tabatas, through #BestBodyBootcamp.
Tabatas are a form of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and are executed at an extremely high intensity level for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of rest. You repeat this continuously for 4 minutes for a total of 8 intervals. Tabata training was founded Dr. Izumi Tabata, back in 1996. In Dr. Tabata’s study, he found that the athletes who trained at these high intensity levels for 6 weeks had greater gains in the aerobic system (cardiovascular) as well as anaerobic system (muscles). Those who trained at a steady, less intense rate also saw improvements in their aerobic capacity but not to the same degree as the athletes who had trained with Tabatas. Also, the steady state group did not see gains their muscular capacity as the others did.
In other words, by doing 4 minutes of high intensity activity, you can achieve so much more than if you do an hour of steady cardio. How awesome is that? Looks like you can cross that last excuse off the list!
What kind of exercises can I do for Tabata Training? It depends on what you want to achieve. If you are looking for muscle tone and strength, I would suggest body weight exercises like push ups, squats, planks, and bench dips. If you are looking to gain cardiovascular endurance, you can do sprints either on the bike or running, jumping rope or burpees. You can also do a mix of everything and jog for a 5 minute warm up, do a round of strength tabatas, a round of cardio tabatas, then a 5 minute cool down jog. The key is that tabatas should challenge you. Like put a puke bag in your pocket challenge you. I’m serious. Leave nothing of yourself but a pool of sweat.
I use the app Interval Timer to keep track of my intervals. It’s free, user friendly and dings a bell that makes me feel like a boxer at the end of each interval. There is also a lady with a sexy voice that says “Activity Completed” when it’s time for me to collapse in a heap on the floor. I heart her.
I put together a printable No Equipment Tabata workout, so you can get an idea of what it will be like. Of course, you can make your own with bicep curls, dumbbell squats, etc. The sky is the limit. Form is key, so if you start to get sloppy, slow down and correct.
Have you tried tabatas? If so, did you see a change in your fitness level?
What is your favorite Jim Carrey movie? Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. For. Sure.