I thought it was time for an exercise post. The first one (hopefully of many) on the blog!
Burst training is one of my favorite forms of exercise. It’s also known as Surge Training or High Intensity Training. I’ve been doing this for years, and is now coming out in more and more research that this is a type of exercise everyone can and should incorporate into their workout plan!
Burst training is a high intensity, fat burning workout that saves you lots of time working out and can be done at home or in the gym. Burst training doesn’t burn as much fat during the workout like a steady cardio does, but it does elevate your metabolism for up to 36 hours following exercise. You will end up burning much more fat than traditional, long cardio. Burst training uses up the glycogen within the muscle tissue and allows your body to use fat for metabolic processes instead of sugar. It also raises your fat burning hormones and increases your overall metabolism. This type of training is not easy, you should be out of breath and feel tired, but very accomplished. Plus, any fitness level can do this training. The best thing about it is you go to YOUR maximum effort. And everyone has a different maximum effort! You can also make it very low impact and choose exercises that are gentle on the joints. If you are more advanced, feel free to kick it up a notch and add jumps into it too. You can see examples of exercises below. There are also apps you can download for your phone that are timers for bursting. I have two of them on my phone set up for different workouts.
I perform Burst Training about twice per week. I am usually doing this at home when I am not at the gym. It’s so quick I don’t have an excuse not to fit it into a couple days per week. If I can do it, you can too!
Here’s how you burst train:
–Warm up (2-3 minutes)
–Burst for 20 seconds with 20 seconds of rest (x3)
–Rest for 2 minutes
–Repeat 2-4 times
–Cool Down (2-3 minutes)
You can also try Tabata Training. It is a form of burst training that consists of performing 20 seconds of maximum effort followed by 10 seconds of rest, this cycle is to be repeated 8 times, for a total of 4 minutes of work. It’s an extremely effective workout that can be done in a little amount of time.
Here are a few examples of exercises to Burst Train:
1. Run in Place: You will run in place (move those arms) as fast as you can for the burst.
2. Jumping Jacks: You will do jumping jacks as fast as you can. If you are more of a beginner, move your arms together and alternate each leg. Then it is low impact and won’t add stress to your body.
3. Squats: Perform squats and repeat as quickly as you can, while still maintaining good form.
4. Mountain Climbers: You put your hands on the floor and start in a plank position. You bring one knee at a time up towards your chest as fast as you can. This gets your heart rate up, works your shoulder, and is very low impact.
5. Alternating Lunges or Jump Lunges: Go at your own pace alternating legs for jumping jacks. You can also jump into lunges alternating legs in the air. The jumps are more advanced and can be hard on the joints.
6. Push-ups: Do a few rounds of push-ups and you will quickly realize how out of breath you are. And how much your arms are burning!
7. High Knees: Jump up alternating bringing your knee up as high as you can go. The goal is to jump and get your knees to parallel.
8. Treadmill: You will set the treadmill to a high speed (I start at 9.5, but I also am tall and have long legs). I keep the treadmill going quickly and just jump off the side between bursts and rests. When I am resting 1-2 minutes, I will turn the speed down and walk on the treadmill
9. Bike, Eliptical or StairMaster: Set each of these pieces of cardio equipment to your maximum and perform your bursts. I guarantee you will get looks if you are at the gym because most people are walking or doing some type of LONG cardio.
10. Grab a light set of hand weights and do squats with shoulder press. Or lunges with bicep curls. Then you get cardio + some resistance training.
11. Get Creative! You can do any exercise in any way (even abdominal exercises) and have it be a burst. The goal is for you to be tired and worn out at the end of your exercise.
There is so much more research studying the benefits of Burst Training. I feel like I actually am leaving you hanging without giving you a list of sources and a lot more information. But, for this post, the bottom line is for you to know HOW to burst train and that it’s amazingly beneficial to your body.
So.. get to bursting!!
Have you ever done a Burst Training workout before? What did you think of it?
Join Dr. Meghan's Just Enjoy Health Newsletter
Like what you're reading and don't want to miss out on anything? I get it! I never want to miss out, and by subscribing, you don't have to. I'm going to send you tips and trick right to your inbox to kickstart your health!