Why Is Interval Training So Efficient?


When you embark upon a boot camp, you will be undertaking many different types of exercise, and some of your routines may involve interval training – a method defined by University of Guelph researchers as “short bursts of intensive effort interspersed with more moderate stretches.” Interval training is so often used both at gyms and at boot camps because it hits various targets at once – including better cardiovascular fitness, fat burning, and increased speed and endurance. Because of its shorter nature, interval training is seen as a way to achieve goals while saving on time – a factor that is highly valued by busy professionals who wish to fit their workouts into their daily schedules.

Photo Credit: Gabin Vallet @ https://unsplash.com/photos/J154nEkpzlQ.

Studies On The Benefits Of Interval Training

A study by J Talanian was one of the first to establish the many benefits of interval training. Its findings indicated that after interval training, the amount of fat burned in continuous, moderate cycling increased by 36%. Fitness levels in participants, meanwhile, were lifted by 13%. Some years later, research conducted by Bowling Green State University researchers established that at least in running, high-intensity interval training benefits women more than men, and one of the reasons is the difference in how men and women self-regulate their efforts. Lead researcher, M. Laurent, explained, “Men and women tend to work at the same level of perceived exertion and feel similarly recovered between each interval, however, as they perform the interval runs women tend to work ‘harder’ from a relative cardiovascular (%HRmax and %VO2max) standpoint than men.”

A Step Beyond Interval Training? HIT (High-Intensity Training)

If you are seeking to get the most out of your workouts so you can achieve the many fitness goals set during a boot camp, you might want to try another beneficial training method called HIT (high-intensity training). This is different from interval training or HIIT (high-intensity interval training) because it does away with the rest periods of HIIT. That is, exercises are completed back-to-back, and there is no time given for recovery. Some of its benefits include shorter workout times, improved cardiovascular health, a reduction in body fat, and the building of muscle mass. HIT isn’t for everyone, of course, since it is physically demanding and may be counter-productive for those who prefer high-intensity workouts that provide time for recovery between sets.

Additional Benefits Of Interval Training

Many recent studies have been published which establish the benefits of interval training. One study published in the journal Cell Metabolism, for instance, found that HIIT improved age-related decline in muscle mitochondria (consider the mitochondria the powerhouse of all cells). Another study showed that HIIT rapidly improves the way that diabetics metabolise glucose. If you opt for HIIT, however, don’t over do it. Research has also shown that this training approach can increase injuries (especially in the knees and shoulders), so make sure you are performing exercises with the right technique.

Interval training has various benefits – including fat burning, cardiovascular fitness, and muscle mass growth. There are many different types of interval training, one of the most popular of which is HIIT. HIT relies on similar principles but without the breaks, making it particularly intense. If you do perform high-intensity exercises, ensure that you use the correct technique and rest appropriately between exercises to reduce the chances of injury.


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