Interval training sounds complicated and intimidating, right? But studies show that this type of exercise is the most efficient way to burn fat and build muscle in the shortest time possible. And it’s not very complicated either; it simply means that you change speeds throughout your workout rather than going full force the entire time or just plodding along at a lower intensity. Not only is this the best way to burn fat, but it’s also the most exciting—you push yourself, then you get a chance to recover and catch your breath after such an intense effort (it’ll also make the time fly).
Here are 10 simple interval workouts that can get you started losing serious weight, without ever feeling exhausted or bored.
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Find a decent-size hill. Begin by walking up it, then back down. Exertion going up, recovery coming back down. Do that for a couple of weeks, adding repetitions of going up and down as it gets easier, and soon you'll be ready to speedwalk or even jog up part of it. Continue that for a few more weeks, and you'll soon find that you can run or speedwalk all the way up before walking back down.
Try one of these treadmill workouts on rainy days
The telephone-pole game
You can do this one whether you're a walker, a runner, or a cyclist. When you start out, pick a geographical feature you'll see plenty of during your workout—telephone poles work well, as do fire hydrants, mailboxes, etc.—and alternate speeding up and slowing down each time you see one.
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Drop a size in 4 weeks when you turn your walk into a run
Practically any team sport
If you're up to it, soccer, basketball, bowling, touch football, hockey, ultimate Frisbee, and even cartless golf (swing; walk; swing; walk some more; swing, swing, swing, curse, fling club, walk to retrieve club) will vary your exertion level and give you the interval benefit.
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