Nov 21, 2014

Short and Sweet

5 Interval Workouts for Endurance Athletes

Choosing a Workout

Welcome to the third and final entry in our Guide to Getting Better series. You're motivated, you're energized - now it's time to get going!

Options abound when it comes to choosing a specific exercise routine, but today we're going to focus on the most efficient ways to get in your workout. For the days when you're not feeling a long gym session or you simply don't have the time, there are plenty of shorter workout options that are just as - if not more - effective for fat loss, increased calorie burn post-workout, and improved cardiovascular function. As a result, the right kind of shorter workout can prove a beneficial component of an endurance athlete's overall workout plan.

One caveat: a shorter workout means a more intense one. If you're ready to really push yourself, here are some options that will get you in and out of your Asics so you can get on with your life.


The Super-Short

1. The Scientific 7 Minute Workout

This workout involves doing a series of 12 pre-selected exercises in rapid succession: 30 seconds of activity and 10 seconds of recovery for each. Get the full routine here.

2. Tabata

Tabata involves doing 20 seconds of intense activity followed by 10 seconds of recovery for 8 total sets. The activity itself is up to you. Some options: running or cycling sprint intervals or plyometric exercises such as burpees, mountain climbers, or jump squats. You can keep the activity between the 20 second segments consistent or you can vary the activities between segments.

Want to go longer? Click here for a 20 minute tabata workout.


30 minutes or less

Have a half hour? That's all the time you need for an interval workout. 30 minutes may seem short compared to your normal routine, but it's almost eternity in interval world; prepare to sweat.

The following options allow you to choose between running, cycling, or even the elliptical. These workouts can be done either indoors our outside; however, it may be easier to take these workouts inside as you can control your terrain (especially for option 3).

Keep in mind that these shorter, high-intensity workouts are a substitution for some of your normal steady-state cardio rather than a complete substitution. Doing this type of workout on a daily basis will strain your body to the point of injury.

So now you've picked out a workout and you're prepared to go both mentally and physically. You're well on your path to performance. As for the rest of the way? SportTracks has the tools you need to get where you want to go. Check it out and see what's possible.