There are different forms of aerobic intervals. In my opinion, the most practical is sprint intervals since you burn much more energy in a relatively short time than if you had completed a moderate aerobic routine instead. Those who want to accelerate the effect of controlled-fatigue training, without spending much time in the gym, should try sprint intervals. Moreover, it's a progressive method that eventually improves your endurance as well as your strength and speed.
The best way to incorporate sprint intervals in a progressive routine is by gradually increasing their volume and frequency.
Stand on a treadmill. Start on a moderate-tension level. I recommend that you try to run on the balls of your feet. I've found that doing so works like shock absorbers, and lessens the impact on the joints (especially the knees), when compared to the effects I've found running in the traditional heel-to-toe method. Minimize the time that your feet touch the treadmill. Sprint intervals are an explosive form of running, which should eventually improve your speed and strength. In time you'll instinctively improve your style and posture.
Start running at a comfortable pace. When you've been running for one-and-a-half to two minutes, gradually increase the speed level until you reach the maximum level appropriate for youi Try to sprint for 60 seconds at this levei (beginners should start with a 30-second sprint), and then lower it back to where you began, taking 90 seconds to recuperate. Then increase the speed level once again, and do another sprint. Try to incorporate three sprint intervals in a l0-minute run. Advanced trainees should try to increase the last interval to a 90-second sprint.
If there's a mirror in front of the treadmill, look at yourself while you sprint. Always try to improve your posture; make sure that you run forcefully and your feet hit the treadmill in an explosive "touch and go" manner. Your arm movements should dictate the rhythm of your legs and your breathing.
Doing 10-minute sprint intervals is a good way to start. You may feel muscle pain in your calves or sides, and pressure in your joints. Provided you have the right stride and are free of pre-existing conditions (which could hamper your ability to run or appropriateness to do so), you should recuperate and strengthen weak muscles and tendons rather quickiy.
From now on everything is open to improvement. You can increase the session to 15 minutes, later to 20 minutes, and can increase the volume of your sprint intervals to 90 or 120 seconds, or increase the frequency of the intervals by shortening the time between sprints.
Don't do this routine every day. You'll need time to recuperate. Start with one session a week, and gradually increase it to two or three times a week. As noted, sprint intervals should be completed before resistance exercises, as part of controlled-fatigue training. It's good to do this routine on leg-workout days, since sprint
intervals, combined with leg resistance exercises, are a great way to accelerate muscle development, functional strength, and speed in the most natural and proportional way.
Bicyci i ng/Stationary Biking
• Sprint Intervals
Bicycling places less pressure on your joints than running. Many consider biking a more pleasant and easier way to workout aerobically. In my opinion, whether it's easier or not depends on your level of intensity. You can do sprint intervals when biking in much the same way you do them running.
Start biking on a moderate tension level for four minutes, and then go up to your maximum level, and pump a 60-second sprint. You can also stand on the pedals and push this way until you finish your sprint. Sprint intervals on a bike will improve your strength and endurance. I personally find them less boring than biking on a steady, moderate level.
• Reading while Exercising on a Stationary Bike (time well spent)
I find reading while riding is the best way to eliminate boredom. It's also a great way to use your time for studying or learning something. (Well, this depends on what you're reading.) Bring something good to read, and try it if you haven't already. It activates mind and body, which isn't just a slogan. You'll be amazed at how much you can accomplish. I believe that using your brain while you exercise your body improves cognitive functions such as memory and creativity. Don't ask me for research; this is based on my own experience. Reading while riding also makes the time pass much quicker.
You can choose to alternate between days of biking and days of running, since both methods are good for controlled-fatigue training.
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