WHAT ARE INTERVAL WORKOUTS?

WHAT ARE INTERVAL WORKOUTS?

Before we prepare a note in response to this important question, let us pick up off where we left you in the introductory article. In that article most of the time was spent on motivating the approach and tone taken in writing these articles. The central theme of this men’s health and fitness series was announced. It takes the form of what is on most newcomers’ lips. It always begins with a question. And so to proceed towards answering those questions for interested readers.

Going forward, the following series of articles will be apportioned into three sub-themes. To spell it out alphabetically, they are your fat loss corner, your interval workouts and weight training and nutrition. Subjects are deliberately interspersed in order to provide the reader with as much variety as possible. The intention is to not overburden readers with too much factual or technical information but rather to get them to enjoy their reading in the motivational sense.

The Concept

Through repetitiveness, improvements are being made. Practice makes perfect. Repeating the same exercises over and over again brings about those necessary improvements. For instance, a gentleman with weight bearing issues cannot expect to lose weight if he goes no further than just three reps in the gym. He does, however, make gains once he proceeds from five reps during his first two weeks of training to ten, twelve or fifteen reps in the second month of training.

The Purpose

In the competitive sports arena, the repetitive nature of interval workouts helps sports men to make great strides in boosting their performance levels and improving their ability to win competitions and races, as well as matches. Speaking of which, the use of interval training is sometimes ignored by amateur team members and their coaches. Fair enough that it may only be a game for them, but do look at it this way.

Take the fine examples set by two footballing greats, one long since retired and the other still thriving. We use their examples here because their dedication to practice and the results they have achieved are legendary. But this is not to suggest that there are not hundreds of other dedicated players out there applying the same disciplinary attitude to their necessary practice. By now, most football fans are quite familiar with Real Madrid and Portugal superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo.

But his former Manchester United stalwart, David Beckham, was as dedicated. Long after the lads had left the playing pitch to take their ritual showers; these two fine gentlemen were still practicing their free kicks at goal. Is it any wonder then that their strike rate has been well above the average? In the case of conventional interval training in the gym, the purpose is always to improve muscle mass and strength.

The Process

Those that gave up too soon in the exercise arena, not so much that they thought it was too difficult for them, but essentially boring, need to come back to the gym whilst being reminded that the repetitive nature of interval workouts is quite necessary. At the same time, boredom never needs to set in when varying these interval sessions and including other disciplines in the weekly exercise schedule.

The entire week is an interval workout

Weight training will never be done every single day. Not unless you are training for an Olympic or world championship event as a disciplined weight lifter. No, your goals are entirely different but not at all modest in comparison. If you are preoccupied on improving muscle mass and strength, then you need go no further than three sessions a week. On the other days of the week, you will be taking part in other disciplines.

Running is encouraged so that you may derive the benefits of inhaling fresh air and giving yourself an emotional high in terms of pleasant natural surroundings. One day of the weekend can be reserved for excursions into nature. Here, you can go hiking at low intensity or intermediate levels. Summers are, of course, great for swimming. Exercise is not all work and no play. Dancing remains a popular form of recreational exercise.

Not to be outdone is the important matter of stretching. Do make sure that you make time for this discipline before and after your workouts. While you do not need to do weights every day, you do not need to run every day, unless, of course, you are in training for a marathon event. On those days, you can improve your body’s suppleness and flexibility by doing yoga-type exercises. Or you could simply go for a leisurely but brisk-paced walk.

Focus groups bring about the desired variety

When engaging in weight training and interval workouts, you will still not be repeating the same exercises over and over again. On those three different days of the week reserved for this, you can focus on strengthening different muscle groups. Those who are in training for a marathon for instance, generally place more emphasis on their legs. But for general exercise purposes solely to keep fit, a balanced approach is always healthy.

It remains stimulating and exercise routines, daily or weekly, need never grow stale. Of course, you can still alter your disciplines every other month for the purposes of giving you more variety and stimulation, as well as motivation to carry on.

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