Interval training has been in the news lately, as recent research supports its role in gaining speed and burning fat.
Eight women in their early 20s cycled for 10 sets of four minutes of hard riding, followed by two minutes of rest. Over two weeks, they completed seven interval workouts.
After interval training, the amount of fat burned in an hour of continuous moderate cycling increased by 36 percent … Cardiovascular fitness — the ability of the heart and lungs to supply oxygen to working muscles — improved by 13 percent.
It didn’t matter how fit the subjects were before. Borderline sedentary subjects and the college athletes had similar increases in fitness and fat burning.
When men exercised for two 30-minute stretches, taking a 20-minute rest break in between, they burned more fat than when they exercised for a single 60-minute session, and then rested afterward
While the proportion of total calories burned did not differ between the two workouts, fat represented nearly 77 percent of the calories burned in the recovery period after the two-part exercise session, compared with about 56 percent of calories burned in the recovery period after the single long exercise session.