As the warm days of summer start to wind down you may be beginning to worry about how your progress in the gym will be affected by the numerous food holidays coming up: Thanksgiving, Halloween, and the nuclear bomb of eating events, Christmas, with all its parties and events.

 

Maybe you think that the best approach to combat excess weight gain while still enjoying the events is countless hours of steady state cardio, you know, long runs on the treadmill, torturous climbs on the stair master and endless cycles on the spin bike.

 

***Or, you could try a much more efficient approach***

Interval Training!

 

What is interval training?

Interval training is high intensity bursts of activity interspersed with lower intensity active rest breaks. A very simple example would be running up a long set of stairs very quickly then walking back down and repeating.

Why do interval training?

The main advantage of interval training is the short amount of time it takes to elicit excellent benefits. In fact, a recent review paper that looked at the benefits of high intensity interval training (Carrasco, 2017) found that in most cases, interval training resulted in approximately twice as much weight loss as traditional steady state training.

So how much should I be doing?

The review paper referenced above looked at eight research studies all of which used varying interval lengths and total times. Essentially, it makes little difference as long as the intensity is very high. Shoot for about 90% of your max heart rate during your high intensity interval.

How do I calculate my max heart rate?

 

Your max heart rate is based on your age. It is calculated as: 220-Age
For a 45 year old individual, their max heart rate is 220-45 = 175
Using 90% would give:175*0.90 =158
So…our hypothetical trainee would try to get their heart rate up to about 160 beats per minute during their high intensity interval

 

Making interval training work for you:

  • Aim for intervals of about 10 seconds of high intensity pace (fast running, cycling, swimming, etc) and 20 seconds of lower intensity rest (Walking, etc).
  • Try to sustain this effort for about 7-8 minutes
  • Be sure to warm-up and cool down for about 5 minutes before and after the intervals
  • If you want to increase your calorie burn, add resistance. This could involve pushing a sled :), using a resisted bike, such as a fan bike, or performing loaded carrying exercises such as farmer’s walks.

The Take Home Message

  • Interval training is a fast and effective way to experience awesome fat loss results.
  • For it to be effective though, the intervals must be very intense. You definitely should not be able to speak while doing the high intensity portion.
  • If you have any questions about how to incorporate interval training into your routine, please ask Jon and Thomas. They are happy to help!

 

Reference:
Carrasco, L. (2017). The effect of sprint training for reducing body fat in women. Strength and Conditioning Journal, 39(4), 89-96.

Prepared for the JKC Blog by Coach Thomas

 

I am the oldest client at JKC at 79 years, soon to be 80. I started training at JKC July 2021. I started at JKC because two of my three sons Justin and Michael and their partners Andrea and Keir and one of my doctors recommended JKC. They all train at JKC Now my wife Linda trains at JKC too. My third son Jonathan lives in Kingston. There is a congenial community atmosphere at JKC. People are introduced to each other. There is effective personal training at JKC.

After my children were born, I was completely out of shape. I had been active before my first pregnancy in 2008. I saw a post on social media about a charity event that was hosted at the gym. It prompted me to check out the JKC website. I was immediately impressed by the professional content and decided to give it a try. The professionally crafted and uniquely tailored work outs, as well as the sense of accountability and commitment that they foster. I have not missed a workout since joining – contrary to other experiences I have had when purchasing gym memberships. The flexibility of booking and rescheduling workouts, made easy by an online app, also contributed to my success in meeting my fitness goals.

I enjoy every session, working out with Jon, Thomas and Craig, as well as the “JKC Community”. Anytime someone achieves a personal best, I enjoy the celebration and support everyone gives each other. For me, I fondly remember achieving personal bests on bench press, chin ups and the sled push, in particular.

I had signed up for other gyms in the past and never went or rarely went. Something always got in the way or I was just too tired and lacked motivation to go. This way I’ve made a commitment to Jon or Thomas and I try very hard to keep my sessions once I’ve booked in. JKC is different from other gyms that I’ve tried in the past because no one is there to be “seen”. We are all there to get a good workout in and go on with our lives. And it’s a small gym so you get to know everyone and it’s like a big family. When I joined JKC, I couldn’t do a chin up with an elastic band, but I’ve slowly worked up to 10 free hanging chin ups. That was big because I hate chin ups.

I chose JKC originally to help prevent rowing injuries. I’m a rower and we won the St. John’s Regatta in 2019 but I rowed through a rib stress fracture and missed significant time in the boat during the racing season. Training at JKC consistently since the pandemic helped me stay injury free this year and made me the strongest I’ve ever felt, which helped me help my team win the 2021 St. John’s Regatta! Jon adds variety and mixes the exercises up well so that the workout goes by quickly and strength is gained. The gym is very personable and I like the eclectic mix of people that are there. JKC is much more intimate and personal than other gyms.

I’ve always been a gym rat, but was getting tired of the same ol’ routine. My better half was attending JKC and encouraged me to try it out. My favourite part of JKC is that is isn’t a gym – it’s a community. Jon and Thomas are awesome, and I love that every time I go I know who’s working out with me and we can socialize while working on our health. Everyone is supportive, encouraging and genuinely looks out for one another. It’s an upbeat and positive experience and I can honestly say that I look forward to each and every workout.

As Seen On: