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Are the Shorter workouts as good as the Traditional Longer ones?

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This is an interesting question given that many of the latest workouts are much shorter than the older traditional ones.  So why are so many new workouts shorter and are they as effective?  Let’s look into this a bit deeper.

Let’s be clear that time is a major issue for many of us as we all live such busy lives.  So in order to help people ‘make the time’ to workout, many of the top trainers have created shorter workout programs in order to meet the majority of people’s needs.  Now shorter does not always mean better or as good without the workout program being effective.

In the past many people went to the gym for 60-90 minutes.  They lifted weights, did some cardio and maybe some core/ab work.  Typically the workouts were slow paced which allows your body to recover and sometimes too much.  Sure if you workout that long you will burn calories and build some muscle but if the workouts are not developed correctly then your results will not be as good as they could be – even with much less time working out.

When I started working out in my teens I lifted at a very slow pace.  It was all about ego and lifting heavy weights.  Sure muscles were developed but this was not a plan for long-term success.  I came across P90X which is a program developed by a world-class trainer Tony Horton, and this program used new techniques and was developed in a way that your body should not get complacent with the workouts so you would continue to see gains as you go through it. This was called ‘muscle confusion’.  These workouts were typically 60 minutes in length but you workout at a very fast pace.  Tony put a ton of action in these 60 minutes so you burnt a ton of calories while building muscle.  Technology and the latest science was used to build the program in a fashion that MANY people saw incredible results.

Now fast forward a couple of years, and now Tony and others at Beachbody have developed many programs in the 25-30 minute range.  Why?  Time was one key item that people have, but the programs were using the latest scientific data and technology to ensure while these workouts are shorter they are very effective.  Some of the key reasons include:

  • HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) – this is where low and moderate intensity levels are alternated during the workout which results in you get much better results than normal cardio and also speeds up your metabolism so you burn calories during the day
  • FIT (Focused Interval Training) – your workouts are very high intensity for a period of time, very short recovery period, and back at it with high intensity.
  • Scientific data has shown that you get the most of your workouts in the first 30 minutes.
  • A unique combination of variety and intensity.
  • You also need to make sure you bring it for the full time – in longer workouts you can maybe lighten it up a bit here and there but with time being so short you need to focus and give it everything you have for the best results.

In conclusion you can certainly get great results in the shorter lengthen workout programs if you pick the right ones based on scientific data and test results.  Beachbody has a number of workout programs that will meet your needs.

Reach out to me so we can discuss your goals and fit you into the best program that fits into your life!

—Coach Mike

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