My New Favorite “Got No Time” Workout

Over the last few years my husband has been really preaching the praises of interval training. He, too, works in the fitness industry and really tries to lead by example when it comes to following through on a style of training. While he now works on the corporate side, his athletic talents started in swimming. For a swimmer, many events are quite short, commonly under four minutes. As a young adult, my husband would consistently train between 14 and 17,000 meters a day in the pool! That’s about 4.5 hours each and every day. Ugh! Full disclosure: my husband is from Dublin and, at his peak,  swam for Ireland’s national team and competed world-wide at the highest level.

Years later, as he got back into training, it didn’t make a lot of sense to him why he trained so long for an event that would last (in his case) only two minutes. As a father with a full time job (and a wife who often reminded him that she, too, had a life), there was no way he could be dedicate that much time to swimming alone.  Needless to say, the amount of time he spent in the pool down-shifted. Gradually, he began swimming short, fast intervals. In fact, today, every workout he does incorporates high quality interval training (usually amounting to 50% of his workout). It’s working for him. Last week he swam the fastest 100 meter backstroke since he quit the sport back in the mid-90s.

So what does this have to do with my My New Favorite “Got No Time” Workout? I’m getting there!

If you’re married and you take the advice of your spouse the first time they suggest something – well done! Good for you! It took me a little longer to warm up. So finally after a couple years, I decided to commit to just intervals. The most appealing thing about this type of training is that it’s not time consuming. Probably like you, I don’t have hours a day to spend working out or training anymore.

Here is My New Favorite “Got No Time” Workout! It’s simple, challenging and, I believe, results-oriented. I’ve been doing this, or some other form of interval training for the past few months, and have noticed that my legs turn over faster and my cardiovascular performance has improved. While this hasn’t been a big focus for me, some of you might wonder if I’ve had to curb my diet or perhaps put on a few pounds because I’m not working out as much. Nope! In fact, I’m in better shape and feel stronger than ever.

Warm Up:

  • 10 minutes easy cardio

Main Set:

  • 2 minutes hard effort (at the end of the 2 minutes, I feel I have to recover, but don’t feel like I’m going to fall over).
  • 2 minutes very easy effort (if running, I walk for a minute, then jog for a minute; if on a bike, I ease off for a minute, then slowly pick it up again)
  • Repeat this combo 6 t0 8 times. After your last hard set, cool down.Simple, right?

**The key is really pushing yourself on the hard efforts, and easing off completely on the easy efforts.
**Hard effort is relative; you have to challenge yourself.
**You can do this workout via any form of cardio (running, cycling, Spinning, elliptical, stair climber, etc).

Since committing to this type of training, I’ve only done mid-distance races, and this weekend will be my longest of such. I’m running a half marathon here in Chicago with my sister. We’ve never done an event like this together, so it should be a lot of fun. I’ll let you know how I do after I finish the 13.1 miles.

My ebook, 20 High Energy Workouts is filled with interval-only workouts scalable to any fitness level. Why not download it and give a few workouts a try? If you want something more hands on, my 40-Day Shape Up will be open for business in the next few days!


Want to see more workouts like this? Hang out with me on Facebook. I’ll be posting some really great health and fitness tips over the next few weeks, and I don’t want you to miss out. See you there. Traci


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