I love Old School things…Playing Arcade Donkey Kong, Listening to the hard beats of 80’s/90’s rap legends -‘Public Enemy’, watching ‘Happy Days’ Re-runs, spotting Farrah Fawcett iron-on T-Shirts, and wishing acid wash jeans would make a comeback. OK, maybe not the last thing, but the rest, are old school at its best.
I get asked about HIIT training almost daily. What is it, and how do you do it. When I tell people the basics of it, I usually get the “huh? That’s it?” type of look. Its really not that hard. HIIT style training is one of the best ways to lose fat fast. If it is accompanied with a solid strength training program and a good diet, it is even better. For one of the BEST fat loss training books out there, check out Alwyn Cosgrove’s AfterBurn . You won’t be sorry!
My good friend Jason Ferruggia recently posted an article on his blog about keeping things simple when programming your training systems. His article was right on the money (check it out here – Keep it simple Stupid )
Most things will work if you stick to them and do the basics. People tend to make programs way too complicated. HIIT is simple and if you stick to it, eat well and add in some basic weight training, you will lose unwanted fat, it really is that simple.
So to help people with their HIIT programming, I will outline an “Old School” approach that athletes have been doing for years…long before “HIIT” was ever written about. Anyone can do it too.
Warning: This system is SIMPLE. So simple that ANYONE can get it and do it the first time out. Do not try and over-complicate it whatsoever. This training is tough and very hard on your system, so if you have any doubts about your health, seek advice from your physician before you try this!!
1. Get your running shoes on and find a safe street to train on (i.e. stay away from major highways).
2. Find a marker. I use telephone poles simply because they are easy to find and usually spread out at equal distances.
3. Start jogging… Nice and slow at first.
4. When you reach about 3 minutes into your jog, find the next telephone pole and start sprinting as fast as you can as soon as you pass it. Keep sprinting until you reach the next pole.
5. Jog once you hit the next pole.
6. Once you pass the next pole up the street, start sprinting again.
7. Repeat this pattern until 8-10 minutes is up. Chances are you won’t be able to handle much more than this anyway. If you can, by all means do 12-15 min. or just run harder.
If you don’t like to run the streets or can’t find one with enough poles. Go to your local high school and use their track. Same rules apply. There will be light poles around the field. Mark them out and get going.
If you don’t want to use the poles, jog the straight away and sprint the bends in the track. Once you are at a very high level of fitness, try sprinting the straight aways and jogging the bends.
This is Old School training at its best. Just you, your shoes and a few markers. Be creative and have fun with it. Remember, the basis of this type of training is to go all out for a set period of time and then perform an “active” type of rest for a somewhat longer period of time. Intervals can be played with as you get better.
You will see great results from this training and you don’t need a fancy treadmill or elliptical machine either. Besides, you will be the only one on the road training like this, I can pretty much bet the house on that.