Tabata Intervals – 12 Week Interval Workout Progression

One of the most popular interval workouts among Strength Coaches, Personal Trainers and Exercise Enthusiasts is the Tabata Interval Workout.

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If you’ve never heard of the Tabata Protocol? It’s a high intensity interval training method originally created by Japanese researcher Izumi Tabata. Put simply, the Tabata Protocol is one the best cardio / metabolic conditioning workouts every discovered because its simple to understand and easy  to apply.

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“The rate of increase in V02max is one of the highest ever reported.” – Izumi Tabata, Japan?.

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With only 8 minutes (give or take) 2-3 times per week, you can turn your body into a fat-burning machine that will outlast all comers!

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The original Tabata Protocol consists the following:

  • 5 minutes of warm-up

  • 8 intervals of 20 seconds all-out intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest

  • 2 minutes cool-down

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Now, you will need to gradually build up your ability to successfully complete the full Tababa without loosing intensity, overtraining or puking every workout  . Therefore, I never start athletes out from day one doing the Tabata Protocol the way it is typically described above.

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Many folks don’t realize it but, If you research the Tabata Protocol online, the original study conducted at the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo, Japan used highly-trained endurance athletes in peak physical condition.

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Now, because most folks are not highly-trained endurance athletes, it’s important to utilize a progressive approach to increasing fitness level and work capacity to accommodate this workout. This is especially important when training power based athletes or working simply to improve overall fitness.

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So, to help you train smarter, harder and safer, In this post, I’m going to provide you with a 12 week progression for using the Tabata Interval protocol.

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In the chart below, you will see figures that look like this – 10/20 x6.

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The first number listed is the work (exercise) interval in seconds (ex: 10 =10 seconds). The second number listed is the rest interval in seconds (ex: 20 = 20 seconds). The last figure represents the number of rounds you will perform of the given interval (ex: x6 = perform 6 rounds).

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Put simply – 10/20 x6 = 10 seconds work / 20 seconds rest x6 rounds

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Okay, now that you understand how read the chart below. Here is my 12 week Tabata interval workout Progression.

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12 Week Tabata Workout Progression

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wk.1 10/20 x6
wk.2 10/20 x7
wk.3 10/20 x8
wk.4 15/15 x5
wk.5 15/15 x6
wk.6 15/15 x7
wk.7 15/15 x8
wk.8 20/10 x4
wk.9 20/10 x5
wk.10 20/10 x6
wk.11 20/10 x7
wk.12 20/10 x8

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Keep your eye on the Blog because very soon, I’m  going to provide you with another Tabata progression. This will be a shorter, 8 week progression used for fitter more well conditioned athletes. STAY TUNED!!!

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