As winter rolls in, many people abandon exercise. I encourage my clients to use the winter as a time to switch up their workout routines and reap the benefits of cross training. If you already workout indoors, the winter months may not threaten your workout schedule. However, if you’re an outdoor runner or walker or participate in other outdoor activities, the change in weather may put a strain on your fitness regimen.
My blog post titled “Tips to Keep Your Family Active and Unified This Winter” offers some great ideas for winter fitness activities. Please check it out for various cold weather workouts. In addition to these suggested activities, I have put together an effective and efficient indoor winter exercise circuit. This routine utilizes Tabata Training. Tabata Training is based on 4 minutes of intense interval training. During those 4 minutes you alternate between 20 second high intensity intervals and 10 second rest intervals. This method has been proven to be more effective than traditional interval training which alternates longer rest periods with shorter high intensity periods. Tabata Training can be done with any type of exercise including squats, sprints and pushups. I use this training method periodically for many of my long time clients and it shakes up their routine every time.
When I use the Tabata Method, I like to include it as part of a full circuit workout. Try the following indoor exercise circuit which utilizes Tabata Training for an outstanding winter indoor workout blast.
1) 5 minute warm-up with your preferred cardio exercises.
2) 4 minute Tabata Squat (20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 second of rest repeated 8 times)
3) 4 minute Tabata Pushup (20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 second of rest repeated 8 times)
4) 4 minute Tabata Pull Ups or Bent Over Rows. (20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 second of rest repeated 8 times)
5) 2 minute Tabata Squat Jump (20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 second of rest repeated 4 times)
6) 4 minute Tabata Sit Up (20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 second of rest repeated 8 times)
7) 5 minute cool down with your preferred cardio exercises.
This 28 minute workout will give you a quick full body kick. It’s just the jolt you need to get your workout in gear this winter. Also remember you can use this method for any exercise. Feel free to utilize the format of this routine and replace the exercises with others that may be more specific to your goals. For example you can include bicep and tricep exercises or leg and glute exercises.
Don’t use the winter as an excuse to be lazy. Instead, get excited about new twists that can add benefit to your workout. I recommend the Tabata Method as a great start!
Jim Bompensa has been a health club owner and manager, personal trainer, group fitness instructor, and nutrition specialist for the nearly 15 years. He is currently the owner/operator of Body Physics Fitness Center in Haddonfield, NJ. Jim has appeared and contributed on ABC and NBC in Philadelphia, PA as well as Designing Spaces on TLC.