Fitness Expert’s Tip of the Month – June

Benefits of interval training

Interval training is highly popular as a very effective way of burning calories, reducing body fat and improving your cardio fitness levels. It involves alternating high intensity bursts of activity, with lower intensity stages of recovery. Because the body’s aerobic and anaerobic systems are overloaded at the same time, you get the benefit of training both at once.

As a high intensity training method, it is certainly harder work than lower intensity training, but the benefits can be seen much more quickly.

How interval training works-

The interval training technique can be applied to pretty much any exercise, e.g. running, rowing, swimming, cycling etc. Taking running as an example, you’d start with the usual warm-up for 5-10 minutes at a jog. Then increase your pace to a sprint for one minute. At the end of the minute, lower the intensity by slowing down to about half the speed to allow your body to recover. Stay at this rate for about 2 minutes before starting the next high-intensity minute. Keep alternating these two periods.

Depending on your fitness level, you might not want to push yourself too hard during the higher intensity periods at first. However, you’ll quickly find that your fitness improves and you’ll soon be able to increase the speed or duration of the high intensity bursts.

Some exercise machines such as running, cycling, rowing machines and elliptical trainers have an interval training setting as one of the built-in programs. They’ll allow you to set two speeds, or resistance levels, and press a button to change between the two. If the machines at your gym don’t have interval training pre-programmed, you can simply change the speed or resistance setting manually.

If you prefer exercising outside, this training method is easily incorporated in activities such as running and cycling, by speeding up and slowing down.

Long duration, endurance training is often associated with injuries because of the repetitive stresses placed on joints and soft-tissues. Because interval training is less repetitive, it is a good way to reduce risk of these types of injuries. You’ll notice your workouts going bye faster, and increase your challenge all the time. By introducing interval training into your regular workout sessions you will notice huge improvements in your overall fitness level in no time.

For more information on Interval, or other fitness training modalities, please contact Amy @ or visit us at

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~ Amy Lademann, Fitness Expert, Campus Calm

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