Are you dreading the holidays because of all the weight you know you will gain? Are you planning on yet another New Year’s resolution to lose weight and get into better shape? Well, you can forget everything you think you know about exercise, because some experts are now suggesting that three minutes is enough. Oh, and that is not three minutes per day; that is three minutes per week.
In the modern education system, everyone has learned some amount of traditional exercise advice. Simply get 30-60 minutes of cardio at least 5 times per week and mix in at least a couple of days of strength training. It’s a tried and true formula and people have been using it with varying degrees of success for many years now. Virtually every workout in the past was some variation of this formula. Of course, many know that putting aside 5 hours or more a week is simply impractical and the motivation required to maintain this is difficult to say the least.
While people in America are constantly looking for new workouts to make themselves look bigger, scientists in Britian are simply seeking an effective system to improve overall health. The result of these efforts, led by Professor Jamie Timmons, comes in the form of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). These high-intensity workouts are designed to be done in short bursts, leaving you practically breathless afterwards. In this case, they tested 30-second intervals, at which time you would engage in a rigorous workout. Afterwards, you rest for as much as a minute and then repeat. Do this three times, and you are done for the day.
One way to accomplish this is by simply running up and down your stairs at home or sprinting around your favorite park. Regardless of how you accomplish it, the idea is that after 30 seconds you feel exhausted, rest for a minute, then repeat. Various trials were performed to verify the effectiveness of this program and all were extremely promising.
Since the original findings were revealed back in 2012, there has been more time to test the finding of these initial studies to see how well they translate to long-term effects. Though the results are still promising, most individuals still seem unable to accept that this sort of workout routine is giving them the results they are after. In effect, many have taken the principles of HIIT and actually changed it to involve as much as 30 minutes per day (programs like Crossfit). Still, the three-minute window still appears to contribute to overall healthy body operations and increased fitness. So if you can handle HIIT for longer periods of time, then go for it.