20 Minute Fat Burning Cardio
I know just as well as anyone else out there that finding time for a workout can be challenging, and at times when I’m super busy I turn to interval training, or HIIT workouts. HIIT (High-Intensity-Interval-Training) takes a lot less time and burns a lot more calories making it a very efficient way to work out.
The way it works is simple- your body has limited supplies of what is known as ATP. ATP is the energy you use when you sprint or jump- it’s what allows you to push at 100% effort. The reason interval training is so beneficial, and so difficult, is because ATP is only available to use for about 10 seconds, then it becomes depleted and your energy levels drop dramatically making the rest of you interval extremely difficult to finish, which is where the real challenge and strength building starts to happen. Replenishing your amounts of ATP only takes about 10 seconds, that’s why when you do interval training you take short breaks that range from 30-10 seconds, just enough time to replenish your energy levels so you can burst through the next interval set.
This type of training is known as anaerobic training. When you train anaerobically you deplete your body of oxygen, which we use to metabolize and produce energy. When we don’t have enough oxygen our body turns to other sources for energy- first carbohydrates, then fats, then, if it absolutely has to in times of low calorie intake or survival mode- protein. When we deplete our body of oxygen for a long period of time- like when we interval train- we need to replenish, this is where EPOC comes in.
EPOC, or Excess Post-workout Oxygen Consumption, can last anywhere up to 48 hours after training. During EPOC your body is trying to replenish your stores of oxygen, and this actually takes a bit of work in terms of calories. So, while you’re in EPOC you’re metabolic rate is higher than normal, meaning your burning more calories than you normally would doing the same day-to-day activities. In short- EPOC boosts your metabolism for a short period of time, and we all know a boost in metabolism is exactly what we need when we’re trying to burn some fat.
Another reason I love interval training is because it’s a different way to train your body compared to steady state cardio and lifting. More importantly, training your heart. Lifting and basic cardio is great, and its necessary to a well rounded fitness routine, but adding some interval training here and there is great way to train for cardiovascular health, high-intensity situations, and to keep your heart nice and strong… and lets be honest- the heart is our most important muscle, without it we couldn’t survive! It’s important to take care of all muscles, and a lot of people seem to forget about the heart.
Here is a great little 20 minute cardio session that I have done in the past. It is perfect for fat burning and increasing your speed. Take caution, these speeds may be too fast for you if you are just beginning. If they are, start with 8.0 speed on the sprints and increase as much as you can to feel challenged but still capable- we don’t want anyone hurting themselves! For the 25 second sprints, you should be running as fast as you possibly can, 10 out of 10 effort for as long as you can- were talking super heavy breathing here!
Here it is:
0:00 – warmup, 3.5speed, 0 incline
5:00 – sprint, 11.5 speed, 3 incline
5:25 – jog, 6.0 speed, 0 incline
7:55 – sprint, 11.5 speed, 3 incline
8:20 – jog, 6.0 speed, 0 incline
10:50 – sprint, 11.5 speed, 3 incline
11:15 – jog, 6.0 speed, 0 incline
13:45 – sprint, 11.5 speed, 3 incline
14:10 – jog, 6.0 speed, 0 incline
16:40 – jog, 5.5 speed, 0 incline
17:10 – jog, 5.0 speed, 0 incline
17:40 – jog, 4.5 speed, 0 incline
18:10 – walk, 4.0 speed, 0 incline
18:40 – walk, 3.5 speed, 0 incline
19:10 – walk, 3.0 speed, 0 incline
20:00 – done!
Don’t forget to stretch, hydrate, and supplement! I have an awesome MRM “Natalie kit” that has all the supplements I use daily!