Archive for the tag - HIIT

Should You Jog In Place At A Red Light?

dont-walk-signI’m sure you’ve seen it before. You’re driving along and someone is running on the sidewalk. They hit a busy intersection and the light is red; to avoid cooling down, the exerciser jogs in place. And you have a chuckle because they look ridiculous.

Most trainers will note that jogging while jogging in place burns more calories than sitting on the couch, the red light dance that most joggers perform doesn’t accomplish much. In fact, there are a few other strategies to try that are far more effective.

If your goal is to have a long, steady-pace run (for example, if you’re training for a 5k or marathon), then you shouldn’t stop running at all. Instead, turn right or left and go down a different block. Zig-zag along your running route and cross when you’re able. Double back if you need to – but don’t break your stride.

On the other hand, if you’re looking to incinerate some calories and body fat, opt for some high intensity interval training. As I’ve said before, it’s the type of cardio that burns fat without muscle – and it’s what I often use in my own workout. It creates some serious results. To make your run into a high intensity interval workout, sprint as fast as you can until you reach a red light. Catch your breath. Then, sprint to the next red light. It’ll kick your ass, but they don’t call it high intensity for nothing.

Another option is using red lights to strength train. When you reach a red light, drop and do push-ups until it turns green. Or, for a real challenge, perform burpees.

Alternatively, you can use red lights to perform dynamic stretches – especially if stretching is something that you usually skip. Dynamic stretches are stretches that you perform while moving, like swinging your leg out or lunging forward and lifting your heel repeatedly.

Or you can just keep doing the red light dance to the delight of passersby. ๐Ÿ™‚

Does Crossfit Work?

rich-froning-shirtless-crossfit-1Founded back in 2000, CrossFit is a exercise technique that combine gymnastics with strength, circuit and endurance training. It’s definitely no joke and it’s extremely grueling – but there are no shortage of CrossFit fans called CrossFitters. In just 13 years, CrossFit now has 7,000 gyms and more than 10 million participants.

So how effective is the technique? Is it just another fitness fad and marketing gimmick? Or does it live up to the hype? A recent study commissioned by the American Council on Exercise enlisted the help of researchers from the University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse to answer those questions.

For the study, 16 healthy male and female individuals ages 20 – 47 were recruited. Baseline fitness levels for established for each participant – and then each participant went through two separate CrossFit workouts. Throughout and/or after the workout, researchers recorded the participants’ heart rate, Vo2, ratings of perceived exertion and blood lactate concentration.

Though it took participants varying amounts of time to complete the workouts, times averaged roughly between 6 and 9 minutes. In that amount of time, participants burned between 64 and 117 calories. Heart rates were elevated to 90% of maximum heart rate – the higher end of industry recommendations. Similarly, VO2 levels were at the higher end of guidelines at 80% of VO2max. Blood lactate levels were 3 – 4x normal threshold levels.

So what’s the bottom line?

Researchers concluded, “CrossFit works.” It’s a great exercise, especially for its short duration. And like any high intensity interval training workout – like Davey Wavey’s Get Ripped Workout – you’ll see much greater increases in aerobic capacity versus traditional training.

Of course, this doesn’t mean CrossFit is for everyone. Beginners, older populations or individuals with medical complications may not be well-suited for CrossFit. Moreover, as many CrossFitters can attest, the injury risk is very high.

But for the healthy and brave, CrossFit can be a great option to kick their workout into high gear.


Burning 200 Calories in 2.5 Minutes.

How would you like to burn 200 calories in just 2.5 minutes of exercise? Researchers from Colorado State University and University of Colorado Anschultz Medical Campus found that interval training can do just that.

In recent years, high intensity interval training has become increasingly popular due to its fat burning benefits. Though the training is intense, it’s quick – and thus, it fits nicely into even the busiest of schedules. It’s an extremely efficient form of exercise, and there has been an increasingly large body of evidence and research to support the claims.

In this new study, researchers recruited healthy male volunteers between the ages of 25 and 31. For three days, the volunteers were locked into individually sealed rooms with the air intake and exhaust regulated. Specialized equipment measured oxygen, carbon dioxide and water content to determine how many calories each volunteer burned per day.

Though the first two days of the stay were largely sedentary, volunteers engaged in high intensity interval training on the third day. Using a stationary bike, the volunteers sprinted against high levels of resistance for 30 seconds. Coached over an intercom, the volunteers were told to give 100% effort. After the sprint, volunteers were given a four minute period of recovery – and then, another sprint. This continued until five, 30-second sprint intervals were completed.

In total, the workout amounted to 2.5 minutes of hard exercise. After analyzing the results from the room’s calorimeter system, researchers concluded that an extra 200 calories were burned during the high intensity interval training day. The increased calorie burn occurred not just during the exercise, but for several hours thereafter.

200 calories is a huge return for such a small investment of time. When completed a few times per week, it’s easy to see how these calories could add up – and result in big changes and sustainable weight loss over time.

To try interval training for yourself, download Davey Wavey’s Get Ripped Workout.

Sprinting Vs. Jogging for Weight Loss.

Spriting: It's not easy... but it is effective!

Are you looking to lose some extra weight or burn off some excess fat? A good and balanced workout routine contains a combination of cardiovascular exercise and strength training. But when it comes to cardio, many well-intentioned exercisers opt for long periods of jogging rather than short, intense sprints.

In the last few years, we’ve been learning a lot about the benefits of quick but intense exercises like sprint intervals. Over the weekend, I was delighted to come across a recent study published in the International Journal Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism and featured in TIME.

For the study, researchers compared results from eight male students. The students, divided into two groups, performed either 30 minutes of endurance cardio (i.e., jogging) or two minutes of extremely intense sprint intervals. The exercise was repeated three times per week for a six week period. During the exercise, and then again after 24 hours, researchers measured the students’ oxygen consumption.

Though oxygen consumption was 150% higher during the endurance cardio versus the sprinting, researchers discovered something very interesting: After 24 hours, total oxygen consumption was nearly identical between the two groups. In other words, this study suggest that intense sprint intervals can boost your metabolism over the next day just as much a longer jog.

And that’s just with two minutes of sprinting.

Though the study was conducted on a small group of male-only students, it does support what we’ve come to know (and love) about short bursts of intense exercise. Not only does intense exercise require less of your time, it results in a longer metabolic boost. It’s the whole idea behind high intensity interval training (called HIIT for short) – and it’s the guiding philosophy for my Get Ripped Workout videos.

The bottom line is this: If you’re really serious about losing weight or incinerating some extra fat, it’s not the amount of time you need to increase in your workout so much as the level of intensity. Of course, you need to push yourself when engaged in high intensity interval training. It’s not easy, but it is worth it – and it’s great news for all of us not looking to spend half the day in the gym.