23 February, 2012
Dr Tabata is a Japanese researcher who developed a surprisingly effective high-intensity intermittent training routine that was proven to improve both anaerobic and aerobic condition. His protocol consists of twenty seconds of maximum output, followed by ten seconds of rest, repeated eight times without pause. So the total session is only four minutes long! Yet it's been shown to be more effective than a traditional 60-minute cardio training session, such as a bike ride. Of course it's not nearly as enjoyable.
Dr Tabata's original protocol is meant for elite athletes, not guys like me in their mid 50s. Some of us would be on the floor gasping after a full set going to 90% of max heart rate (at least I would be). Fortunately there are less extreme versions and plenty of info on the web about them. I've follow Mark Sisson's method, doing a few sprints on the beach or in a grassy field a couple of times a week. I do similar sprints on a bike. A couple of weeks ago we started doing paddling intervals at outrigger canoe practice.
Interval training can add some extra speed and power to any sport. I find it makes my longer rides more enjoyable. But, sadly, I still don't look or ride like Ottavia Bottecchia in that cartoon. The New York Times recently had an article about the health benefits of intervals.
Anyone else doing intervals or other training beyond simply riding?
Posted by VeloOrange at 1:07:00 PM