Tabata Training – Ultimate Cardio Workout?

Tabata
Shane Welland
(10 Posts)

The basis of a Tabata training session is 4 minutes of intense intervals with a total time of 4 minutes. Can 4 minutes of training be enough for fat burning?

We’ll use sprints as an example:

Sprint for as hard as you can for 20 seconds, Walk for 10 seconds, Repeat 8 times, Total of 4 minutes exercise.

Tabata training can be done with a whole range of exercises- but the idea is to get the whole body involved, or at least the major muscle groups. It can be done with barbells, kettlebells, dumbbells or bodyweight. I both use and believe in this form of exercise for weight loss, the long aerobic sessions do work but they take too long and can get quite boring.

Warning: Tabata is a very advanced form of training!!!!

If you are a beginner then start slowly and gradually work it into a full session. Combining weight training with a Tabata 3-4 times per week (along with a solid nutrition plan) will get you in the best shape of your life.

How to do Tabata Training – The idea is to perform as many reps of any given exercise in 20 seconds (make sure you can see a clock clearly or have a timer to hand). Start out with low weights (you’re not body building), the key is to keep your metabolism raised. I would advise to begin with, doing Tabata 1-2 times per week.

You should aim to do 8 sets, when you can do 8-10 reps you should aim to add a little extra weight or another session per week to increase intensity.

Tabata is a fast, efficient, intense and effective way to burn fat.

Although a low intensity exercise will burn more calories a high intensity workout will burn 9 times the amount of fat for every calorie burned. This is due to the after effects of the workout- the body continues to burn fat (increased metabolic rate) and appetite is suppressed.

How does Tabata affect your weight loss? – For as long as fitness has been a leisurely activity we have been fed the “aerobic lie”. The truth is, when it comes to weight loss long, slow cardio is inefficient. This is due to EPOC (Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption – the calories we burn after exercise). Once you finish aerobic training that is it- done…when you perform high intensity interval training your body continues to burn calories up to 2 days later- Yep that’s right, your body still burns that stubborn fat even after you’re done exercising.

Exercises that work well with Tabata

  • Front Squats – Hold a light barbell at shoulder height squat down raise back up.
  • Thrusts – With a dumbell or Kettlebell in each hand squat down raise up and press overhead.
  • Barbell, Dumbell, Kettlebell Cleans – Take the barbell, dumbell or Kbell from the floor clean to shoulders.
  • Squat Press – With a Barbell set on your shoulders squat raise up and press it overhead.
  • Body weight Squats – If your just starting out try these, as your conditioning levels improve move up to using weights.
  • Kettlebell Swings – Set a kettlebell between your legs bring up to shoulder height.