The average person has a 40- to 60-minute window each day when they have time for exercise, but not enough time to do an hour of moderately intense cardio. This is where the Tabata Protocol comes in.
In this workout, you work as hard as you can for 20 seconds and then rest for 10 seconds. You repeat this pattern eight times for a total of 4 minutes of continuous exercise. As a result, you’re burning more calories than if you ran for an hour at the same intensity level!
This means you can get the same amount of benefits in half the time. If you’re short on time, this is a great way to squeeze more exercise into your schedule.
The best part is that it takes very little time to recover from an intense workout and be ready to go again. In fact, if you work as hard as you can, you’ll be surprised how quickly you’re ready to go again.
The Tabata Protocol was originally created in 1996 by Dr. Izumi Tabata of Japan’s National Institute of Fitness and Sports as an experiment on Olympic speed skaters. During the Olympics, athletes have a very limited time to train due to all their other commitments – this is what inspired the creation of the Tabata Protocol.
The original experiment was simple – test a group of Olympic speed skaters at their VO2 max level (the point where they could no longer breathe hard), using a bike, and compare them to a control group. The experimental group exercised for 4 minutes at 170% VO2 max and rested for 3 minutes, and the control group did an hour of moderate intensity exercise. They then tested their VO2 max again using a bike.
The experimental group had increased their VO2 max by 14%, while the control group only had an increase in VO2 max of 1% – an amazing 13 times greater than the control group!
In addition, the experimental group slashed their body fat levels by 6%, while the control group had a 2% increase in body fat.
These original results were later repeated multiple times, using athletes of various abilities and age groups. In addition, there are now over 1,000 published studies that have been conducted on this protocol. Here’s what one study found:
The Tabata Protocol is a very efficient way to burn fat and improve cardiovascular fitness. In as little as 4 minutes, you can work so hard that your heart rate reaches its maximum level – meaning you’re burning the most calories possible in this amount of time.
Although many trainers might not recognize the Tabata Protocol because it’s relatively new, it really is the most effective way to get fit. For example, one study found that you can burn up to 20% more calories in a 30-minute workout using a Tabata Protocol of high intensity exercise versus exercising for 30 minutes at an even and moderate pace.
If you’re looking for the one extreme workout that will slash your body fat and improve your cardiovascular fitness, the Tabata Protocol might be for you!
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