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Did you know that interval training can burn up to twice the calories of regular cardio training?  There are several different styles and intensities for interval training, and all of them have value for weight loss.  To get the best results with interval training first you need to understand the principle.

Interval training uses short bursts of energy that burn sugar, and that sugar creates lactic acid is such quantities that it cannot be removed or metabolized quickly enough and your body cannot continue at that intensity.  With interval training what you are doing is using a medium intensity phase as an active recovery, say jogging at a moderate pace, and then for 30-90 seconds doing a HIGH intensity workout like sprinting, and then immediately returning to the moderate intensity jog.

This is an effective way to exercise because you are burning maximum calories in a short amount of time.  Also, this is great exercise for your cardio respiratory system because it will keep you pumping so much blood for an extended period of time.  Think of it as weight training for your heart!

The draw back, when done properly it is hard and can make you want to puke.  In my opinion though, the puke feeling is far outweighed by the benefit of the results.  Also, it will give you an awesome endorphine high!

Here are 2 sample plans based on very different fitness levels.

* start out at a moderate walk for 2 minutes.  Then, when you hit the 2 minute mark, go to a slow jog for 1 minute.  At the end of the minute return back to the pace that you had for the moderate walk.  Repeat this process 10 times and you will burn about 450 calories in 30 minutes!

*start out at a moderate jog, maybe 6 miles per hour.  Then, when you hit the 2 minute mark, get off the treadmill and do 1 minute of Jump Squats.  At the end of the minute get back on the treadmill and return to the 6 mph jog for another 2 minutes.  Then get off the treadmill and do 1 minute of push-ups and then return to the treadmill for 2 minutes.  Finally jump off the treadmill and do 1 minute of Burpees and then get back on the treadmill.  Repeat this workout 4 times and you will burn about 750 calories.  An additional benefit of this version is that you mixed in resistance training and will get the added benefits associated with resistance training instead of just cardio.  Warning - this is much harder and will exhaust you if you are not used to working out this way.

Of course, it is assumed that you are properly warmed up, stretched out and ready for exercise.  It is also recommended that you see your doctor before you try new exercises or programs, especially when you start to push them a little harder like this program will.

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