Eliminating Hard to Lose Belly Fat with Sprint Interval Training
For most of us, gaining fat isn’t a problem. It’s the losing part! So what is the best way to get rid of fat around the belly, hips and love-handles? That can be a difficult question to answer. Every person is different and responds differently to different forms of training and nutrition. Injuries and physical limitations need to be taken into account as well. With that said, it is probably impossible to define one certain modality or exercise as the BEST way to get rid of body fat. However, research has shown that Sprint Interval Training, aka SIT (ironically), has been shown to get rid of body fat at a much faster pace than other forms of training for its test subjects.
If you want more proof, let’s take a second to think about a few different sports. I often tell my clients to think about how they want to look or what they want to be capable of physically, think of an athlete that matches what they want, then train like that athlete does. For example, think about sports that involve a lot of maximum effort bursts such as Olympic sprinting, basketball or football. Most of these athletes have impressive muscle definition and very low levels of body fat. Now, compare that with sports that train more for endurance such as Olympic marathon runners, soccer, and baseball. These athletes are still in incredible shape but their bodies don’t look nearly the same. As always, genetics play a role but this is more a result of the way they train and compete during their sport.
So, let’s get into what SIT is and how you can use SIT to say bye-bye to that belly fat! Sprint Interval Training can theoretically be performed on any modality, assuming you’re able to work at 100% effort. The two most common examples are actual sprinting and cycling. In this article, I’ll be using actual sprinting as the preferred modality.
Why Does Sprinting Interval Training Work?
Sprint Interval Training, as well as other forms of HIIT, have been shown to increase cardiovascular capacity as much or more than steady state cardio according to Len Kravitz in his article about HIIT vs. Continuous Cardiovascular Endurance Training. The effects of interval style training at maximum intensities burns high amounts of calories, while training your body to work through the aerobic and anaerobic thresholds. A good Sprint Interval Training workout will consist of a mixture of maximum and near-maximum effort sprints done with appropriate rest between sets. The duration, distance and rest time can all be varied to keep your routine fresh and your body guessing. As with any form of exercise, it must always be evolving or your body will adapt and you’ll plateau. I’ve recently started sprinting on a weekly basis and after only a couple of week,s I’m already seeing more definition. However, sprinting is a very high impact activity, so you must take the time to get a good warm up and cool down in before and after your workout.
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