I love oddball training.
Especially when it’s fun.
I’ve noticed recently that when I include a few very hard bursts in my otherwise shambling old-person runs, my body responds by shedding belly fat – and the effect is immediate. Not a bad thing, given my high age (71) and low mileage.
Now, along come researchers from Australia who were able to confirm my finding.
The study was reported in a March 10, 2013 Lifehacker article by Shep McAllister.
Scientists in Australia claim to have discovered the exercise technique that burns the maximum amount of fat with the least amount of work.
Participants in the study put in three 20-minute stints on an exercise bike per week for 12 weeks. During the sessions, they would repeatedly sprint for eight seconds, then pedal slowly for 12. The researchers claim that the subjects lost as much weight with this single hour of exercise per week as they would have with five to seven hours of jogging. The group explained the results as such:
Fast sprinting caused the body to release high levels of a specific group of hormones, called catecholamines, which drive the release of fat, especially abdominal and visceral fat, from fat stores so it can be burned by working muscles.
‘We don’t know why, but moving limbs very fast generates high levels of catecholamine,” Dr Boutcher, whose findings are published in the Journal of Obesity, said.
Sprinting for eight seconds raised a person’s heart rate while keeping lactic acid release, which make muscles tire quicker, to a minimum, he said.
So, is sprinting the end-all solution to our weight-loss problems?
Heck no. The long-term answer is eating food that is extremely nutrient-dense, while avoiding processed oils and all forms of sugar.
But if you find it amusing to press the pedal to the metal occasionally, it’s pleasant to know that it’ll shave your gut.