Burn Fat Fast: The Best Tabata Workouts

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Tabata training has become extremely popular over the last three years.

Tabata is a form of high intensity interval training (HIIT). By performing exercises at a higher intensity level, you not only burn more calories during the workout, but also 24 to 48 hours after the workout. In addition, you’ll increase muscle mass if strength training moves are incorporated.

Here’s how it works.

Tabata Workout Design

This is how a typical tabata workout is designed:

  • 5-minute warmup
  • 20 seconds all-out intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest, 8 times
  • 2-minute cool down

In tabata training, each exercise is performed 8 times for 4 minutes. The work set is 20 seconds long and the rest set is 10 seconds.

During the work set, the goal is to perform each exercise at your maximum capacity — meaning as many repetitions as possible with proper form.

Each subsequent work set should try and match the first set in terms of number of repetitions. This becomes challenging as your muscles start to fatigue.

Should I Try Tabata?

Tabata training is helpful when you want to get the most out of a quick workout. With a busy home and work schedule, you might not have that much time to exercise. But with tabata, you don’t need more than 32 minutes to fit in an effective and intense workout.

This routine can be performed anywhere and doesn’t require a lot of equipment. Try it as often as you like, staying within your fitness level.

Tabata Workout

With this routine, you’ll be able to get a total body workout in less than 40 minutes. Start with the warmup and move on to the exercises below.

Warmup

  1. 15 jumping jacks
  2. 10 squats
  3. 10 high knees
  4. 15 skaters
  5. Five alternating step back lunges. Try to hold each lunge for three breaths while tucking your hips forward and keeping your shoulders down. Keep your arms straight above your head.

Tabata Exercises

Remember to keep track of your repetitions and try to match that number with each subsequent set.

1. Squats

20 seconds of squats, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on a deep low squat with the glutes. When coming back up, push from the heels to stand tall.

2. Pushups

20 seconds of pushups, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on tucking your tailbone towards your core. Keep palms flat with equal pressure throughout the palm and elbows close to your body.

3. Plank

20-second plank, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on keeping your back flat and your neck and shoulders relaxed; neck should remain in line with your spine.

4. Tricep Dips

20 seconds of tricep dips, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on keeping your body as close to your arms as possible. You can either extend your legs or keep your knees bent.

5. Burpees

20 seconds of burpees, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on touching your chest to the floor and when coming up, try to add a jump. You can also modify if needed.

6. Mountain Climbers

20 seconds of climbers, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on maintaining a neutral spine. You can move your legs as fast or as slow as you want. The goal should be to bring your knees as close to your stomach as possible.

7. Rower Situps

20 seconds of situps, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on extending your body long as you inhale. When you exhale, you should be sitting up with feet flat on the ground while touching your knees. You can modify how high you come to sit.

8. Alternate Step-Back Lunges

20 seconds of lunges, followed by 10 seconds of rest.

Repeat 8 times.

Tip: Focus on stepping back and lunging low. Push through your heels when coming up to stand. Keep your hands tall above your head.

The Takeaway

A tabata workout is designed to be intense. If you are new to strength training, become familiar with the different strength movements before trying these exercises.

If you are a beginner, talk to your doctor before trying a new or intense workout routine.

Ready to try this workout? These are the best tabata apps to help you keep track of your repetitions.

[This article was previously posted in Healthline on October 20, 2015]

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