Time. Sometimes it feels like there isn’t enough to fit everything in. First you have to get the kids ready for school, then you have to get to work, then when you get back in it’s time to get dinner ready. Before you know it you’re in bed recharging your batteries ready for the next day. Now try and factor in some time to keep in shape. Starts to get pretty difficult, right?
You will hear people say that if you are serious about staying in shape then you will find time, and if you’re not, you will make excuses. To a certain extent this is true, but it isn’t quite this black and white.
People that lead busy lives need a way to save time and manage to keep in shape at the same time. That is where interval training comes in. Of course, interval training has been around for years and now there aren’t many in the industry that don’t know what it is. But it hasn’t always been this way.
The benefits of interval training have long been understood but we’ve only heard them screamed about in blog posts, fitness magazines and in some gyms in more recent years. And we’re not saying that you should opt for a particular method of training just because it is convenient but it is definitely an added benefit.
So let’s recap interval training quickly. All you need to do to incorporate it is split up high intensity activity with a period of short resting. It’s literally that easy. What’s great is that it gives you the opportunity to be creative with your workouts too, so you aren’t repeating the same thing day after day. Nothing will stifle your progress like falling into a repetitive regime that bores you eventually. The fact that all you need to ensure is that you have intense activity means that you can choose almost anything.
You can even make further adjustments to suit your fitness goals. If you are training for a particular sport then all you need to do is choose exercises that are going to compliment the body parts that you are going to be using. Equally, if you are training to lose fat or build muscle, your workouts can be geared towards these things too. You are literally only limited by how creative you are willing to be.
And don’t forget the timesaving aspect. If you are travelling to the gym, getting ready, taking part in a one-hour class, showering and travelling home, your trip to the gym can soon become an almost daily two-hour commitment. Some people just don’t have this sort of time. If you are creating your own workouts that incorporate these periods of high intensity then the time aspect becomes irrelevant. Now clearly you can’t expect to work out for five minutes but you don’t need to be spending an hour in the gym. The best advice here is to gear the length of your workouts to both your goals and your lifestyle. The trick is trying to find the balance between the two.
The final thing to remember is that interval training is different to rushing your way through workouts. It’s all about being efficient. You don’t want to be skipping rest periods or shortening the high intensity bursts just to get finished more quickly. Planning your interval training before you get to the gym will allow you to plan exactly how long you need to be spending working out. And that means you won’t be rushing to get finished any sooner. Just make sure every part of your workout is essential and adds something to your overall progress. Then stick to the two main aspects of interval training: high intensity bursts with short rest periods, and you won’t go far wrong. It’s a tried and tested system for a reason!