Burn Fat and Rev Your Metabolism with the Fatblaster Workout
The holidays can be a challenging time to get in quality workouts. I do fine until Thanksgiving, and then all hell breaks loose and I squeeze in shorter workouts. But getting in shorter workouts doesn’t mean you need to lose fitness along the way. In fact, you can actually lose more weight and gain fitness by running less. It’s all about getting in higher quality workouts when time isn’t on your side.
Research shows that weaving in high-intensity workouts into your regimen will boost your resting metabolism for up to 24 hours post-workout, much longer than your usual easy effort run. And that’s not all folks, you’ll burn more fat along the way as well. Plus, it can boost your speed, fitness, and fun factor too.
This is why I created The Fatblaster Workout (aka The Perfect Holiday Workout). It’s the perfect workout for this time of year because you can easily do it on a treadmill, bike, elliptical, stairwell, rower, or any place you can push hard and recover easily. It also burns fat like a log on the fire, especially in comparison to a steady-state aerobic workout.
Less time, more intensity = a happier runner, and one that will not only maintain but possibly gain the benefits of HIIT.
Of course, there are a couple of guidelines that should be followed.
How to Perform the FatBlaster Workout for the Most Benefits
Run this workout one time per week if you’ve been running regularly at least 30-45 minutes three to four times per week, if you’re not injured and have no aches and pains, and if you’re new to high-intensity workouts. Start by adding this workout once per week for the first three weeks, and if all feels good (no aches and pains or fatigue) add a second workout with at least three days in between (ie. Monday and Friday). Your other workouts should be easy-effort short or long runs.
Run this workout one to two times per week if you’re a seasoned runner with a solid base of miles and have run fast, slow, and in between workouts. You can run this workout one to two times per week and then balance your program with easy effort runs or workouts to balance the recipe.
Avoid running this workout if you’re learning to run or new to running or fitness. I’d encourage you to try my Zero to Running Program instead. In essence, it is an interval workout but without the super-high-intensity running, you need a base of miles for. Once you build up to running regularly for 30-40 minutes for several months, then you can take a shot at HIIT with less risk of injury.
Try this workout on a variety of modes. You don’t have to run to enjoy the perks of a high-intensity interval workout. Try it on a bike, elliptical, rower, stairclimber, walking on a treadmill, and more! Performing the #FatBlaster workout on low impact modes is a great tool and a fun way to cross-train.
And finally, don’t run this workout if you’re in your recovery phase from a recent racing season or a half or full marathon. That is time you should be running slow and easy to recover from the demands of pushing hard.
The Fatblaster Workout:
- Warm-up by walking for 5 minutes. walking. Start with an easy effort and build to a brisk pace just slower than a jog. This is an important step, don’t skip it!
- Run at an easy effort (conversational) for 5-10 minutes to continue to warm up.
- Repeat 8 times (16 minutes):
- Run at a sprint effort (hard) for 30-60 seconds. (30 if you’re new to speed, 60 if you have a base and experience running speed workouts).
- Recover with 90-120 seconds of very easy jogging or brisk walking. First, walk to catch your breath, then jog the rest of the recovery. If this is new for you, walk the entire recovery.
- Walk it out to cool it down for 3 minutes.
Total Time: 30-45 minutes
Things to Know Before You Perform The Fatblaster Workout
- You can use speed or incline on the treadmill to increase the effort level. The key is to run at an effort that is anaerobic (hard) and at or close to maximal effort. That doesn’t mean pulling a George Jetson and trying to run so fast you fall off! Hard but controlled are the operative words here. And as you progress through the workout, you will get more fatigued, so it is wise to start off on the easier end of the speed to finish strong.
- If you’ve never run speed workouts before, and have a base of running miles, start with 30-second intervals and 90-second recoveries. If you’ve done speed workouts in the past few weeks, start with 60-second intervals and 2- minute recoveries.
- You can also perform this workout on a bike, elliptical machine, or on a stairwell. When I’m traveling and training for a hilly race, I’ll hit the stairs for intervals and walk the hallways for recovery in my hotel.
- I know some of you may be thinking, “…30 minutes? I’ll just add a few more minutes to make it 30 or to run four miles. That sounds better, right?” No. The key to gaining the most with HIIT is to run or push hard, recover well, and keep it short. It’s not about the volume of miles, it’s about the quality of the intensity. Put your energy into running the HIIT workout, and let your body recover while burning fat.