Weight loss strategies: intensity levels

Some research suggests that higher intensity work outs help shed the weight faster. In a recent blog by The Pulse, they talked about research by Tabata that showed that higher intensity workouts helped to burn more fat.

Their pitch–work out for four minutes a day doing high intensity exercises.

Naturally this sounds appealing, but then they added three caveats–First, participants warmed up for 10 minutes (14 min workout). Second, this study goes on to say: “Plus, to burn as many calories as you might like, you need to regularly exercise longer than just 4 minutes.” Third, these were in-shape college athletes, and their results might not appeal to the average person.

So what does research show about the average person with respect to intensity of workouts?

Jakicic et al. (2003) looked at overweight, sedentary women for 12 months. They randomly divided the women into four groups: vigorous intensity/high duration; moderate intensity/high duration; moderate intensity/moderate duration; or vigorous intensity/moderate duration. Their conclusions after a year of working out–all women showed significant weight loss, and there were no differences between groups.

In other words–be wary of gimmicks to weight loss, like 4 minute work outs.

 

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