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Short on Time? Tabata Workout for Fat Loss

Short on Time? Tabata Workout for Fat Loss

Is being short on time or traveling for work limiting your precious workout time? Fear no more! This Tabata Workout will burn fat in less than an hour!

Workout Summary

  • : Lose Fat
  • : Full Body
  • : Beginner
  • : 3
  • : Bodyweight, Dumbbells
  • Female

Workout Description

Tabata. Might sound like Ciabatta, but we’re not talking fast food burger buns here. We’re talking quick and effective workouts to condition your entire body. And nothing tastes as good as fit feels anyway.

So exactly what is tabata? Well, it’s my favorite way to get in a quick and intense workout.

Each exercise is performed for four minutes total: 20 seconds of work followed immediately with 10 seconds of rest, repeated until the four minutes are up.

Because this is a timed workout, plan on lifting less weight than usual. You’ll reach fatigue much faster than you might think.

Benefits of Tabata

First and most obvious, you’re finished with your workout in no time! You can hit a total body workout in about a half hour or you can concentrate on a couple of muscle groups. Either way, you’ll feel the pain for days.

Tabata should be approached with the intention of performing as many reps as possible within the 20 seconds using good form. Never sacrifice form for another rep.

Remember the adage, “An ounce of prevention, a pound of cure”? Well that extra barbell bicep curl your threw up as fast as you could (even though you were near exhaustion) and then felt that pain in your back, yeah that last one? Not worth it. Now you have a pulled muscle in your back at minimum.

Okay back to the benefit of lifting as quickly and safely as possible for 20 seconds. Tabata keeps your muscles under constant stress. You’re tearing down the muscle fibers at hyperspeed and preparing them for an awesome rebuild.

With only ten seconds of rest, your muscles are not fully recovering which keeps them in the breakdown mode for longer. When the burn gets really intense with traditional weight lifting, you might think you’ve done enough and put the weights down. With that little timer going, you’re forced to keep lifting and push past the burn.

No gym? No problem! Tabata can be done anywhere and can be applied to every muscle group.

Short on Time? Tabata Workout for Fat Loss

If you have some free weights at home, you’re all set. Traveling? Pack some resistance bands. And if you have neither weights nor bands, no problem. Bodyweight works as well. Use a chair or step-stool in the absence of a bench. There really is no way to go wrong when incorporating tabata. And you know what that means: no excuses.

Timing your tabata exercises

You guessed it: there’s an app for that. Go to your phone’s app store and you’re certain to find several options after searching “tabata timer.” Look around and find what’s best for you.

Make sure your Bluetooth is turned on, put on your headphones to your favorite workout jam and press Start! My timer alerts me right over my music, so I can keep on rocking while I’m feeling the burn. The timer tells me when it’s time to rest and when it’s time to get back to work. It’s a no-brainer type of workout. Just push start and go!

Total body tabata workout

Get ready for a total body blast in under 30 minutes! Rest for no more than two minutes between exercises. I use that time to hydrate and to catch my breath. Twenty seconds doesn’t sound like very long and neither does four minutes, but you can explain that to your muscles later. Grab your sweat towel and let the burning begin.

Each exercise is performed for four minutes total: 20 seconds of work followed immediately with 10 seconds of rest, repeated until the four minutes are up.

1.Air Squats

I like to start off with air squats. It warms up my entire body and really gets the energy flowing.

Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Toes can be pointed forward or out to the side depending on how your muscles engage. Lower your body almost to the floor without letting your knees extend past your toes.  Explode back up with your chest lifted and control your body on the way back down for the next rep.

I like to hold my arms in front of me when I squat and then swing them out by my sides as I thrust up. This helps me to be as explosive as possible and those muscle fibers to be burning.

After 20 seconds, rock your weight from one foot to the other as you rest for 10 seconds. When the timer sounds, it’s go time again!

2. Bicep Curls

Bicep curls can be done on a machine or with free weights. I prefer free weights, because I like to engage my accessory muscles as much as possible. Choose a lighter weight than normal, about 60% lighter. If, after the first 20 seconds, that feels too heavy to continue for another 3 ½ minutes, change the weights out during your 10-second break.

Short on Time? Tabata Workout for Fat Loss

Again, these are movements of explosion during the lift and control on the release. Don’t make the mistake of swinging the weight up. Proper form means less chance of injury so keep it tight. Elbows are at your sides and slightly forward so that the bicep is doing most of the work. Abs are pulled in to support your posture.

3. Jump Lunges

Think you have great stamina? This will put it to the test. Jump lunges are amazing for your legs and glutes. Remember that the higher you jump, the better the results.

Keep your abs in so that you can better control your legs. Jump up landing in a lunge position with one foot in front of you and the other extended behind you. As always with lunges, make sure your knee does not extend beyond your toes. Explode up and switch your legs, like scissors. Continue until the timer sounds.

Rest and repeat. I usually rest my hands on my hips during this exercise though you could clasp them together in front of you for added balance.

4. Shoulder Press

When doing shoulder presses, choose your dumbbells and get seated on a bench with a low back. This keeps your body in a neutral position letting your arms do all the work.

Abs are still kept tight as you lift the dumbbells to shoulder height as your starting position. For the lift, raise the dumbbells above your head keeping your palms facing away from your body. When you lower the weight back down, stop when your elbows reach just below 90 degrees. Now you’re ready for the next lift.

5. Bench Dips

Good form is always important, but with bench dips it totally changes the effectiveness of the exercise.

Start by sitting on a bench and placing your hands beside your legs. Extend your feet out in front of you. Work on keeping your backside close to the bench as you lower your body until you almost touch the floor. Straighten your arms to lift your body back to the starting position.

You can simplify this exercise by placing your feet closer to you and bending your knees. Make it more difficult by putting your feet up on a platform or other bench.

6. Bicycle crunches

Bicycle crunches are one of the best ab exercises ever. Laying on your back on a yoga mat, draw one leg into your chest while extending the other out straight. Place your hands behind your head, clasping your fingers together but leaving your elbows open. Support the head but keep your chin lifted throughout the exercise.

Twist your upper body so that your elbow touches the opposite bent knee. Keeping the body lifted from the shoulders, switch the leg and arm. Draw your bellybutton to your spine to really engage all those core muscles.

Tabata Takeaway

There are no boundaries or limits when it comes to tabata. Any exercise, any location, any time. No excuses, just quick workouts and amazing results. And we all can agree, that’s the best combination!

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