Doing the same exercise everyday at the same intensity may seem sufficient to maintain your weight, but when you want the scale to change it’s better to try interval training.
1. You’ll Burn More Calories
Ultimately, losing weight amounts to a simple numbers game. You have to expend more calories than you consume, and your body must burn a total of 3500 calories to lose a single pound. Moderate interval training will challenge your body more than steady state exercise, thereby resulting in a greater caloric expenditure overall.
If you walk a slow pace for 60 minutes, you won’t burn as many calories as you would if you interspersed short bursts of jogging into your walk. Your heart rate will climb while doing the more strenuous intervals, which will help you burn calories at a faster, more efficient rate during your entire workout.
2. You’ll Increase Aerobic Capacity
When the intensity of your workouts stay the same, your body won’t have the opportunity to adjust to new levels of exertion. By incorporating intervals into your routine, your lung capacity will ultimately increase over time, allowing you to do longer, more challenging workouts. Interval training will improve your body from the inside out, so that you won’t remain stagnant. The next time you do cardio, try pushing yourself a bit harder for just 10 seconds at a time. You want to feel out of breath, but only momentarily. Allow your body a chance to adapt so that you can lose weight and keep it off.
3. You’ll Increase Lean Mass
Cardio exercise is vital for weight-loss, but steady state exercise can only do so much. Interval training can be done with any type of cardio exercise, and one of the most important benefits is that it will help improve strength and build muscle tissue. Throwing a few sets of lunges into your walking routine is one way to combine interval training with strength training benefits. When you increase your lean mass, your body will more efficiently metabolize fat, thereby making it easier to lose weight and keep it off.
4. You’ll Stay Inspired
It’s easy to lose motivation to stay in shape, especially if you’ve been glued to the same activities for months. Our bodies tend to get used to routines and then we plateau, which can make the process of weight-loss all the more frustrating. To avoid cliff-hanger situations, trying new interval training techniques is a great way to foster a renewed interest in fitness.
Ultimately, you want to do something you’ll be able to stick with, so never push yourself too hard too quickly. Programs like Couch-2-5k utilize interval training to gradually adjust one’s fitness level to be able to sustain higher intensity bouts of exercise. So if you’ve never tried something intense like running, you shouldn’t feel intimidated.
Interval training is an effective tool for both weight-loss and long term fitness gains. When you challenge your body and mind with interval training, you’re more likely to feel alert and accomplished once you do finish an activity, making you all the more confident and motivated to succeed.