This was one of the questions thrown my way today by a client, so I thought I would share one of my favorites!

I am a big believer in finding a challenge to wrap up a workout, or even a practice session at the golf course for that matter.  The idea is to push your emotional and physical boundaries, to make yourself uncomfortable!  It doesn’t have to equal killing your body, but more challenging your ability to mentally engage in whatever the task is.

A tabata is an excellent way to do this.  What is a tabata?  Well, it originated from Dr. Izumi Tabata, a professor in Japan who was tasked by the Japanese Speed Skating team to analyze the efficacy of their training program.  Upon doing so, he identified the benefits of an anaerobic protocol in improving the aerobic capacity as well.  This turned into the traditional tabata we know today which is 4 minutes long and consists of 20 seconds of anaerobic effort followed by 10 seconds of rest repeated 8 times.

The beauty of this system is that you can make it your own.  Repeat the same exercise 8 times, pick 8 different exercises, basically anything goes as long as you are pushing yourself as hard as you stinking can!  Today I decided to incorporate some martial arts into mine with my water weighted kicking bag.  Kicking as hard as I can in 20 second spurts kicked my butt!!

Here are a few exercises you can try in any combo you want!

  • Jumping Jacks
  • Sprint in Place
  • Fast Punches
  • Squat Jumps
  • Split Squats
  • Lateral Bounding
  • Lateral Shuffles
  • Sprints

Like I said, there is no way to do this wrong as long as you are giving maximal effort.  There are some great apps out there that have tabata timers pre loaded to make this even easier.

Give it a try at the end of your next workout, you’ll feel awesome and your lungs will thank me later!

-S

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