Getting It Done with Danny Musico
Posted On Feb 29, 2016
When it comes to streamlining your routine, interval training is a game-changer. Here, we check out 6 interval challenges that have the power to revolutionize your approach to fitness.
If you’ve heard the term “interval training” but were wondering if it’s right for you, think of it this way: Abbreviated, focused blasts of cardio, interspersed with strategic rest, is a winning way to trim up, tone, and break a serious sweat. Interval training is great for strengthening the heart, inching away from plateaus, and infusing your muscles with the can-do energy that will shred you like never before. (In fact, four minutes of solid intervals has the same effect as 40 minutes of zoned-out treadmill time. Think we’re kidding? Try it out and prove us wrong.)
Read on for six of my favorite equipment-centric interval moves. You can also give the interval concept a whirl the old-fashioned way to start, alternating short sprints and walking at a local track, busting out some quick-succession jumping jacks (30 seconds), resting (30 seconds), and repeating each, five to 10 times. As always, consult a medical professional before trying out these new moves.
OK, you ready? Let’s go.
- SPARC By Cybex (cybexintl.com) pits man against machine, With no mechanical assistance at all, it really gets the blood pumping and heart rate soaring in seconds. Try 30 seconds, all-out, followed by 30 seconds slowed way down. Repeat several times. Note that the SPARC is built to specialize in intervals like these.
2. 30 seconds will feel like a lifetime on the Nexersys Punching And Kicking Trainer (nexersys.com). Try 3 sets of intervals, meaning 30 seconds on and 30 seconds rest. This is all about speed and punching-kicking combos performed with maximum output. It will truly engage the whole body.
3. Arguably the most effective spinning bike on the market, the RealRyder ABF8 Indoor Cycle (realryder.com) imitates real outside performance, allowing you to turn 3 minutes of pedaling into an intense and super-effective, all-out exercise. Go as hard as you can, alternating right and left turns and holding for 30-second turns. Do this for 3 minutes and feel the burn.
4. You can’t argue with this classic exercise, one that’s near and dear to my heart. Using Rage Fitness Cobra Power Ropes (ragefitness.com), you can essentially engage every muscle in your body. Done correctly, you will see a particularly big effect on your quads, core, arms, back and shoulders (and, admittedly, you’ll be crying for mercy.) Try 30 seconds of intense intervals, interspersed with 30 seconds of rest, 3 times each. The object here is to get as much range of motion to the ropes as possible to engage more muscles. (If you just use your arms with quick, small movements, you’re cheating yourself out of the benefits.
5. Oh boy… Your glutes and obliques will hate you after 3 minutes of intervals on the Helix Lateral Trainer (helixco.com). Switch up your rotation from left to right, then right to left. It’s awesome for engaging muscles that people don’t normally hit during a north-to-south cardio drill. Moving east-west is not easy to do and so effective.
6. You may liken it to pure hell, but the results are all heaven when you try tosses with the Rage Fitness Soft Stone (ragefitness.com), which range from 50 to 200 pounds. (Seriously, Rage has perfected this giant-size training tool.) So, start in a squatting position, picking up the soft stone in an explosive manner and driving it up all the front of your body, tossing it over behind your shoulder. Turn around and repeat on the other side. Challenge yourself against the clock, meaning 3 sets of 30-second intervals. Prepare to use every single muscle in the body. Good night!