You Won’t Believe How Short This Expert Says Your Workout Can Be

To lose weight| you don’t always need to spend hours at the gym. In fact| HIIT| or high-intensity interval training| has been proven to be one of the best ways to burn more calories and target belly fat. But just how short can you get? Try just four minutes| according to Tabata program director and head coach of Lock Box LA PJ Stahl. According to PJ| the length of just one Tabata cycle is enough to see the results that the interval-training technique is known for| including fat loss| improved metabolism| and better endurance. “You only do one Tabata four-minute protocol in your entire workout|” PJ says. “The reason that the Tabata program works is because I designed it to utilize 20 seconds of beyond-maximum intensity followed by 10 seconds of rest for eight rounds| totaling to four minutes|” he explains. The trick is in the 20 seconds| during which you are supposed to exercise past your metabolic threshold in other words| an 11 on a one-to-10 scale of rate of perceived exertion.

Wondering how often you should sweat it out in a four-minute intense Tabata cycle? Here are PJ’s suggestions:

Novice (someone new to exercise or returning to exercise): start with once a week and add when you are ready.Intermediate (someone who has been exercising at least six months and has had some experience in HIIT| bodyweight and core training| and ploymetrics): start with once or twice a week and add more when you are ready.Advanced (someone who has been exercising six months or more and has experience in the above styles of training): start with twice a week and add more when you are ready.Athlete (someone who has been exercising at least one year or more and has experience with Tabata): start with two to three times a week and add more when you are ready.

Of course| you don’t have to stop your workout once you’re done with your Tabata cycle| but if you’re ready to try this technique| check out a few of our Tabata workouts here!

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart