Shake Things Up

I’ve seen great changes in my body these past few months.

My muscles have gotten stronger, my endurance has improved, and I’m not out of breath after climbing up a flight of stairs anymore. I’ve completed TWO races (a big accomplishment after saying I was going to do it for years and kept putting it off). I’ve also managed to keep close to twenty pounds off for longer than a few weeks. I’ve made great progress.

But I want more.

Not only do I want to complete more races, but I want to lose more weight. I’m not going for super skinny, just healthy. I’m still overweight according to my height (5’2), and need to lose a little over twenty more pounds to get to a healthy range of 115-120 pounds. So I’m half way there.

I’ve been running pretty consistently (minus the week I had to take off after my 8k because I was super sore), but the weight doesn’t want to budge. The love handles and jiggly arms shrunk in size, but they still make their presence VERY well known! For once in my adult life, I want a flat stomach. Is that too much to ask? 🙂

So I decided I need to shake things up.

A couple years ago, Mark and I would go to the gym at our apartment where we were living at the time. While I attempted the treadmill (the only gym equipment I would use because I was embarrassed of how I would look to all of the super skinny, buff neighbors), he would be doing short little spurts of exercises that really had him moving and breathing hard.

He explained to me that it was called Tabata, and that you’re supposed to do 3-4 exercises at 20 seconds as fast as you can, followed by a 10 second rest. Repeat 8 times and you have a 4 minute, feel like you’re going to die, workout. I immediately dismissed it for myself because a) I didn’t want to embarrass myself and b) I figured there was no way I was strong enough to do that and I might actually die.

I was also puzzled at how you can get away with only doing 4 minutes of exercise and burn as much calories as an hour on the treadmill or the elliptical. It turns out you really can.

Fast forward to the present, and I’m ready to try it. I know that I won’t die after running five miles, so I should be okay. I know it’s hard core, but it’s really supposed to rev up your metabolism and kick start the weight loss. I’m up for the challenge.

I think I’m going to start off with two Tabatas each session. Realistically it will probably be just one, but I like to set the bar high so we’ll see. One will be doing all 8 reps on the bike, and the second will be doing a series of 3-4 exercises. I’m thinking jumping jacks, leg lifts, punches, mountain climbers, lunges, or squats. I’ll probably end up mixing it up.

Here’s a sample Tabata workout:

Check back in with me in the next day or two to see how it went!

Do you do Tabata? What exercises do you do? Has it been effective for weight loss?

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4 thoughts on “Shake Things Up

  1. Congrats on wanting to take the next step on your fitness journey!! That kind of training is called HIIT training and I personally love it!! I used to do it all the time on the treadmill when I ran. But my true soul mate workout is Turbo Fire with tons of HIITs!!

      • Ya Turbo Fire is crazy intense that’s why I love it. On the treadmill I didn’t do the incline, but I’m sure it would be much more intense!! By doing these HIITs though it helped to lower my mile/minute times on my non HIIT days dramatically!

  2. I definitely tabata! I do it with air squats, intervals on the bike, sprinting at the track. I was told by my trainer to only do it twice a month because it is SO HARD on you. I’ve definitely had great results with it and look forward to it (crazy, I know) as a way to switch up cardio! Nausea is normal. 🙂

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