Interval training is simply varying intensity levels throughout your workout to incorporate periods of steady-state, maximum challenge and recovery. Research shows that interval training is very effective and increases caloric burn, boosts metabolism and enhances overall conditioning.
There’s lots of ways to implement interval training, from simple to much more sophisticated. For more advanced programs, you can consult a wealth of resources online or talk to a certified personal trainer to help devise a program according to your abilities and goals.
On cardio equipment, you can take advantage of the many pre-programmed interval workouts, or you can just manually increase the resistance level (or pace or incline on a treadmill) every few minutes so that you’re pushing hard and your heart rate is high. After a set period of time (10 seconds to 2 minutes or so), then you drop the resistance level and slow down a bit to recover for the next one to three minutes. You may have to play with the interval duration to keep the workout challenging but manageable. You can always decrease work time or intensity and lengthen recovery periods if necessary.
With Octane elliptical machines, guesswork is eliminated, and you simply select from numerous pre-programmed interval workouts, such as Random, Interval, Custom Interval and Hill routines. Just hit a few buttons and you’re off! With changing intensity levels, exercisers often report that workouts are more fun and the time passes much faster as well.
To vary intensity according to your heart rate – which is a smart way to customize training, take on Heart Rate Interval, Heart Rate Custom Interval, Heart Rate Hill and Heart Rate Speed Interval, and the resistance on the machine automatically changes to ensure that you stay in designated heart rate ranges.
And Octane’s exclusive 30:30 Interval program, designed by the experts at Athletes’ Performance, is an intense regimen that increases cardiovascular performance for new exercisers as well as elite athletes. It’s an exhilarating, “love-it-or-hate-it” virtual personal trainer that you can tackle periodically to watch your recovery heart rate indicate your improving fitness level over time.