Easy Interval Training for Weight Loss in Women

Women can speed up weight loss by adding intervals to their walking routine.

Women can speed up weight loss by adding intervals to their walking routine.

Don't be intimidated by the idea of interval training -- this workout tool has many worthwhile benefits. Women wishing to lose weight can significantly boost their efforts by adopting an interval program in which intense bursts of exercise are alternated with a lighter exercise period. Adding intervals to your workout routine is simple as nearly every form of exercise can feature interval training. This style of exercise helps with weight loss because it blast calories.

Interval Basics

Weight loss is all about burning more calories than your consume. The more intensely a woman works out, the more calories she will burn. Adding intervals to your workout means that, for at least a few moments, you are increasing the intensity. This means you are upping the calorie burn. In addition to increasing your calorie burn, intervals improve your cardiovascular fitness, which helps you exercise longer or harder. This can also aid in weight loss.

Walking

Adding intervals to your walking routine is simple because it can be done either outdoors or on the treadmill. For the easy parts, aim for a light stroll around 2 to 3.5 miles per hour, or a three to five out of 10 on a rate of perceived exertion. The medium intensity sections should cause you to start breathing a little harder and the hard sections should have you nearly breathless and only able to say a single word at a time. Start with a five-minute warmup, then alternate between one-minute medium intensity intervals and 30 seconds of hard intensity intervals. Alternate back and forth until you have completed 25 minutes. Finish your workout with a five-minute easy cool down.

Swimming

A beginner's interval swimming workout involves performing a 200-meter easy swim followed by a set of eight 50-meter intervals in which you swim the first two at 85 percent of your maximum heart rate. Every second interval, increase the intensity by 5 percent. Take 30 seconds rest between intervals. Next, swim a set with six 50-meter intervals in which the first three are at 90 percent of your maximum heart rate and the final three are more than 90 percent. Take 25 seconds rest between intervals. For the third set, swim four 50-meter intervals in which each one is faster than the one before. Take 20 seconds rest between intervals. Finally, swim a set of two 50-meters at an all out sprint pace. Take one-minute rest between the intervals. Finish the workout with a 400-meter easy freestyle swim.

Biking

Begin your bike interval workout with 10 to 15 minutes of easy spinning for a warmup. For intervals, ride hard for six minutes followed by six minutes of easy pedaling. Women who want to lose weight should do this set four times during her workout. With each set, ramp up the intensity. For the first set, you are riding at a six out of 10 on a rate of perceived exertion. By the final set, you are riding at a nine out of 10. By the end, you want to be pushing yourself harder than usual.

 

About the Author

Fitzalan Gorman has more than 10 years of academic and commercial experience in research and writing. She has written speeches and text for CEOs, company presidents and leaders of major nonprofit organizations. Gorman has published for professional cycling teams and various health and fitness websites. She has a Master of Arts from Virginia Tech in political science and is a NASM certified personal trainer.

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