Einstein was a bright guy. He figured out lots of things. One of the things he spent a bunch of time thinking about was “time dilation”. It’s what causes people in sci-fi movies that travel near the speed of light to not age as fast, relative to the rest of the universe that isn’t traveling that fast.I may not be as bright as Einstein (in fact, I’m sure I’m not), but I have discovered my own time dilation event.
Today I hit the elliptical after work. Instead of doing my regular 30 minutes of traditional cardio, I tried a round of “HIIT”. This stands for “high intensity interval training”. In a nutshell, you alternate intervals of extreme effort with intervals of rest. One of the most well-known types of HIIT is called the “Tabata Method“. The Tabata Method consists of a 20 second effort and 10 second rest cycle. Usually for 8 reps. That’s what I did today.
After a 2:00 minute warm up, I did my first rep: 20 seconds of effort, 10 seconds of rest. No problem. Second rep…feeling good!
And that’s when the time dilation began. By the time I reached my fifth rep, my 20 seconds of effort strangely began to feel like a minute long, and my 10 second rest cycle had shortened to about 5 seconds. By the time I got to my last rep, rep number 8, it felt like a 20 MINUTE effort cycle, with a 2 second rest cycle. I kid you not.
I did make it through all 8 reps, and I followed it up with 10 minutes of good old-fashioned cardio. It felt good. Really good. Definitely got my heart rate up!
Is HIIT for me long term? I’m not sure yet. Is it for you? Give it a try and let me know!