Metabolic conditioning, cardio, aerobics, HIIT, or whatever you want to call it, is weight-lifting, which means flossing for dental health. You know, good for us. Nevertheless, it is a grim, joyless, disgusting compulsion.
Granted, we do not get any drool and chewable tablets on cardio training, but none of us started lifting weights so we could spend hours running around or dawdling on machines, or Mother Earth with old ropes that your sports manager stole from the USS Ronald Reagan.
Nevertheless, we have to carry out conditioning work, both for health and to improve working capacity. There may, however, be a way to make it tastier. Scientists have found that short sprint "snacks" separated by an hour or more work as well as they do together in one session.
In other words, you could do short phases of peddling or running or probably any type of HIIT training all day long if you had a minute and got the same benefits as if you had them all at once in a tedious way completed, nerve-wracking session.
What They Did
University of British Columbia scientists recruited 28 healthy, young, inactive adults and randomly assigned them to one of two groups that completed 1
One group completed a traditional Sprint Interval (SIT) training that included three 20-day workouts. Seconds of full-out cycling, 20 seconds each, interrupted by 3-minute breaks.
The other group sprinted "Snacks" (SS), consisting of three separate 20-second full-out bouts, each of which was interrupted by 1 to 4 hours of rest.
What They Fo and
With regard to cardiorespiratory fitness, both the SIT group and the SS group increased their absolute VO2 peak with no difference between the groups. Both groups also showed similar improvement in their 150 kilojoule (kj) cycle time trial.
Use of this information
If you are someone who hates cardio, you can use the results of this study to make it tastier. Let's say you have a stationary bike at home. You can access the thing at any time if you have a few seconds, for example, waiting for your toast to show up.
Just get on the bike (or treadmill or other device)), let off balls for 20 seconds and then go on doing whatever you've done. If similar opportunities arise during the day, you should do a few more 20-second high-intensity efforts.
Similarly, you could do a single 20-second breakout as part of your warm-up for your workout and then do another hour later when you're done, then a third fight later at home.
If we believe the results of this latest study, the impact on cardiorespiratory fitness would be the same as if you had done all three fights at the same time.
It also controls the appetite.
This type of exercise can also suppress appetite. In a separate study, sports scientists at the University of Birmingham found that high-intensity cycling protocols (4 x 30 seconds) also lowered the starvation hormone ghrelin and simultaneously increased the saturation hormone GLP-1.
Contrary to the "sprint snacks" described in the British Columbia study, the subjects with appetite suppression performed their intense seizures at once, but it is likely that even an intense seizure would have similar effects on the hunger hormones would have, albeit to a lesser degree degree.
Everyone should do this kind of HIIT
4 minutes to fitness
- Little JP, Langley J., Lee M., Myette-Cote E., Jackson G., Durrer C. Gibala MJ, Jung M., "Sprint Training Snacks: A Novel Approach to Enhancing Aerobic Fitness." Eur J Appl Physiol. 2019 May; 119 (5): 1203-1212.
- Adrian Holliday, Andrew K. Blannin, "Very Low Sprint Interval Training Suppresses Subjective Appetite, Lowers Acylated Ghrelin and Increases GLP-1 in Overweight People: A Pilot Study, Nutrients 2017, 9 (4), 362.