More often times we don’t really hear about who started a certain exercise regime only about the regime itself. In the case of Tabata, it became popular after scientist Dr. Izumi Tabata and researchers from the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo founded it. It then became popularized throughout the 1990s and has more ground in the fitness industry today.
What is Tabata?
Izumi developed the routine as a way to quickly build muscle strength as well as improve cardio functions in Olympic skaters. He theorized that short, high intensity workouts were the key to bringing home the gold for his country.
Okay, so now you’re wondering whether or not it even works right? Since 1992, Japanese skaters have brought home 3 bronze metals, 3 silver metals and 1 gold. That means they’ve brought home 7 metals over the course of the last 8 Olympics. To put it into perspective for you, the United States has only brought home 3 metals in this sport, and Germany only 1. No one in this division of Olympic sports seems able to stand a chance but only time will tell.
How to Train Using Tabata
If you’re like the rest of us, you just want to get into shape and try something new. In other words, Tabata is not your ticket to the Olympics like it is for speed skaters in Japan. But that doesn’t mean it’s not for you. In fact, there are many ways it can improve your overall health and wellness even if the Olympics are not your end goal.
So, how do you start? First off, you’ll need a timer. This can be a literal egg timer from the kitchen, or you can just use the timer on your smart phone.
Tabata ultimately is broken down not two intervals. The first is a 20 second limit pushing high intensity exercise. Following that interval, you’ll have 10 seconds to catch your breath before the next exercise. The goal is to jump your heart rate up and get your body burning.
How many cycles will you need to do? A grand total of 8 cycles done four times. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. After each 8 cycles, or every 4 minutes there is a blissfully long 1 minute rest period. Therefore, all in all you’re looking at a 20 minute high intensity workout that will kick your butt and get you results.
Are HIIT & Tabata Really Different?
The irony is that while Tabata is considered part of the HIIT family of exercise not all Tabata is HIIT related. If you thought that regular HIIT was intense, then you’d be surprised to know that Tabata is meant to be even more intense. The biggest difference being the time it takes to do a workout is shorter than if you were to do a HIIT workout.
Equipment, or No Equipment?
There is something to be said about a workout regimen that doesn’t need equipment and can still get you sweating. This is how Tabata thrives. You can literally use your own body weight and bulk up by doing the exercises. No equipment is needed.
Does that mean you absolutely can’t use workout equipment? Heck no! While the equipment isn’t a necessary part of Tabata if you want to really push yourself you can definitely use it.
What equipment can you use? One of the best options are kettlebells. Because of the nature of the exercises, they mesh quite well with your routine. Of course, if kettlebells are not your thing regular dumbbells are just as useful.
But what exercises will you be doing anyways? Some of the more common ones include push-ups, high knees, mountain climbers, burpees, squat jumps, and crunches. What’s nice is that out of these various exercises, you’ll only need four to complete your circuits.
How would that look? Here’s an example.
- Push Ups (4 minutes)
- 1 Minute Break
- Mountain Climbers (4 minutes)
- 1 Minute Break
- Squat Jumps (4 minutes)
- 1 Minute Break
- Crunches (4 minutes)
- 1 Minute Break
Keep in mind that between each 20 seconds of doing the exercise that you’re taking a 10 second rest. Also, you’ll want to ensure that prior to and after your workout that you stretch to avoid any injury.
Benefits & Risks to Tabata
Are the risks worth the benefit? First, let’s take a look at those risks and then you can decide if its right for you. For starters, Tabata can be brutal on your body. So, if you’re not used to it then you may want to ease into it to begin. This way your body gets used to the stress you’re putting on it without causing unnecessary strain and potential injury.
Other than that, the risk is only as high as you make it. If you decide to jump into Tabata headfirst and risk injury then you’re more likely going to get injured. But it is 100% worth the risk. Why? Because it is a short workout that’s high intensity. It allows your body to quickly build muscle and burn fat. All in a twenty minute span.
Peptides for Injury
Now, what if you do sustain an injury from going at it a little to hard to start? The first thing you’re going to want to do is perform R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compression, elevation). This will reduce the chances of pain and swelling. Then once you have it under control the healing process will begin.
That’s the phase that typically takes the longest. However, with the help of supplements such as peptides. This process can be sped up. For example, by using BPC 157 you’ll speed up your healing time and get back to the grind faster than if you were to just let it heal on its own.
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