Recently, a form of HIIT was sent to me to review. My first reaction was what is this? It sounds like an exotic beef dish in a Japanese Steakhouse, but “where’s the beef”?
Apparently, The Tabata Protocol, was developed by who else, a man named Izumi Tabata, PhD., a former researcher at Japan’s National Institute of Fitness and Sports. It was originally developed by the speed skating coach as a workout for the team and
Dr. Tabata was asked to study it. It consists mostly of six to seven full wind sprints interspersed with rest periods of 10 seconds and again I ask the question,
“where is the beef?”.
I ask this question “where is the beef” because there is absolutely no exercise whatsoever in Tabata to build lean muscle (the “meat” on your body)-it is pure aerobic! I can vision these speed skating athletes tearing down any muscle they have built up by over-exercising under this method. Now from my vast experience in the Fitness World, I have concluded for an exercise to have quality, it must provide these three key components: (1) Cardiovascular Ability; (2) Flexibility; and (3) Muscular Strength.
Now Tabata “may” provide my first key component, cardiovascular ability, but it falls short on 2 & 3 and I ask, at what cost to your overall fitness level? I have found that Proper Strength Training, completed without rest between exercises, will provide the cardiovascular HIIT effect. Here is an all around HIIT Routine you can do in less than 20 minutes 2 times a week that will include most of the muscles groups and you don’t need a lot of exercise equipment:
First, Start with a set of dumbbell squats in strict form (back straight against a wall and butt to the floor) and perform 10 to 20 reps;
Rest No rest
Second , go immediately into strict form dumbbell straight leg dead lifts (2 to 3 seconds lowering your body and 3 to 4 seconds raising the weight);
Second , then move on to the floor and perform 10 to 20 strict form “static push ups” (holding in the up position for at least 5 seconds and lowering to a 5 second count);
Rest 15-30 seconds (or no rest)
Third , then sit in a chair and perform 10 to 12 strict form dumbbell presses (raise the weight to a 2 to 3 second count up and then lower weight to 3 to 4 second count down);
Rest No rest; go immediately into dumbbell curls;
Fourth , perform 10 to 12 strict form dumbbell curls to a 2 to 3 second count up and a 3 to 4 second count down;
Fifth , then move to the floor and perform 10 to 20 “static floor sit ups” (lowering to a 5 second count and then holding in the up position to a 5 second count)
Sixth, finish my PST HIIT Routine by performing 10 to 20 strict form “static push ups” (lower to a 5 second count and then return to the starting position to 2 to 3 second count)
I guarantee that if you do this routine as I have outlined twice a week, your muscles will be screaming and you will be breathing hard like you have just run some wind sprints.