30 min High Intensity, Fat Burning Blast By Justine Switalla

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Interval training is the most effective way to burn calories, strip body fat and increase your fitness level - and riding a bike is a great way to go about it. It will give you your high-intensity interval training (HIIT) fix, is low-impact and very effective. Not only does it help you get fit and lean, it will shape and tone your legs and let’s face it… who doesn’t want strong, shapely legs?

Firstly, however, what is interval training and why is it so important? Interval training is when you increase and decrease your heart rate by following periods of intense activity with active recovery. When you are consistent with this type of training, you can train your muscles to improve their resistance to fatigue, thereby giving them the ability to work for longer periods of time. In fact, interval training was designed to let you work at high intensity without becoming drained or overtrained. This increases your endurance, helps you develop speed, tempo, timing, rhythm pedal cadence and should become an important component of your training program.

Another benefit to interval training is it may increase your VO2 max. This is your heart pumping faster to transport more oxygen from the lungs to the muscles. As a result, your body will require more oxygen for the muscles, so to help this process your lung capacity expands and you are able to pull in and absorb more oxygen with each breath.

HIIT on the bike will give your body a real kick; you are able to really push to your maximum heart rate then pull it back for rest periods where your heart rate will drop to around 65%. Your body’s ability to raise your anaerobic threshold and buffer your lactic acid build-up would also be much stronger. Riding the bike can also take your mental strength to another level; you really have the ability to push to your limits and go beyond them. We all know that to get results we need to keep shocking the body. Riding the bike with the right intensity will give you some fantastic results. It is great that you can tune into the bike, the workout and some banging beats and really get a good sweat on during your session.

Tips to make sure you ride the bike well and get the most out of your workout:

  1. Set the bike up properly: seat hip height, handle bars the same as the seat.
  2. When sitting on the bike and pedalling, be sure not to bounce. Brace your core to keep your butt glued to the seat. Also, aim to keep your spine in line and look about two metres in front of you. Do not drop your head; you do not want to cut off your air supply.
  3. Relax your upper body when you ride and keep all of your weight in your legs and core, not over the handle bars.
  4. Establish the right amount of resistance for the position. Each position will require different load; you should never free spin when you are racing and you always need to feel tension on the wheel. When you are in a seated power or standing position you should have bodyweight minimum load so that you are using your muscles to drive the pedals.


Phase One - Five min warm up:
Establish a good base load, one where you can feel a bit of pressure and you know you are pushing something at the start. Just cruise at a fairly easy pace for 5 minutes.

Phase Two - Seated sprints:

With working resistance in a seated position, race as fast as you can for 45 seconds then have 45 seconds recovery.


Repeat this 6 times.




Phase Three - Standing climb and seated climb block:

One minute standing climb.   
 30-second seated power position.  
 30-second rest.  
 Repeat this sequence three times.  

Phase Four - Power phase:

One minute seated power climb
(Remember: bodyweight minimum resistance).

One minute standing power (Add a bit more
than seated power resistance, enough to really
push the butt up off the seat).
 One minute rest.  
 Repeat this sequence three times.  


Phase Five - Cool down:


Return your load to minimum, the same as the warm-up.

Four minutes of rolling the legs out to give them a good flush and lower your heart rate.


Try this HIIT session two to three times per week and you will soon realise that you don’t need to spend hours on end on the treadmill to get decent results.

Train hard but train smart.

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