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Interval Training
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Rich Weil, MEd, CDE posted:
Hello Everyone,

I mentioned in my Losing Belly Fat post that aerobic exercise will help, and if you want to increase your fitness quickly then interval training will help. The idea to interval training is to set up work to active recovery ratios (work:active recovery), and as you get more fit, you decrease the rest time and increase the work time. A simple example would be the following:


If you currently run for 30 minutes at 6mph, try jogging for 5 minutes to warm up, then increase the speed to say 6.5mph and jog for 1-2 minutes (less time if you can't go that long), then jog again for a few minutes at your normal speed, then run again at the faster speed, and so on until you reach your time limit. The work:active recovery ratios would be 2:3 if you ran for 2 minutes at 6.5mph and jogged for 3 minutes at 6mph. Over the course of the next few months you will get more fit if you continue with this type of training.

You can also get more specific and use heart rate. Your heart rate is an excellent indication of how hard you are working. For example, if your heart rate is at 70% of your predicted max when you jog at 6mph, then start at that speed and then either increase the speed or elevation, and increase it so that your heart rate increases to 85% or even 90% for 1-3 minutes to start, then back to your jogging speed at a heart rate of 70%. That's a starting recommendation. Over time, your conditioning will improve and then your heart rate will be lower at the higher speeds and you can spend more time at the work speeds and less during the active rest period. You can always vary the ratios if they turn out to be too hard or too easy. 1:3 is a good starting ratio.

If you have more questions about interval training post them to the Exercise and Fitness board. http://exchanges.webmd.com/fitness-and-exercise-exchange

Take care,
Rich
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mmm1812 responded:
How does one apply this to walking? is it the same principle, i.e. walking more slowly at first, then faster, etc?
 
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brunosbud replied to mmm1812's response:
yes
 
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Christyrose123 replied to brunosbud's response:
I would assume walking up and down hills would have the same effect? I don't really walk faster, but I work harder going up and less hard going down.
 
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brunosbud replied to Christyrose123's response:
Absolutely, it has the same effect. I was reading the other night about forces on joints during normal walking and walking up hills. The load bearing forces applied to the knees, hips and core during hill climbs are mind- boggling. If you're lucky enough to have a few nice steep climbs where you live (or stairs at work), you can achieve good fitness quite easily through this kind of interval training. I throw on a 20 lb pack when I walk hills to up the challenge.


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