Interval training, including interval running and interval strength training, has gained popularity as a dynamic workout technique that alternates between bursts of intense exercise and recovery periods. These interval training workouts are recognized for their effectiveness in enhancing cardiovascular fitness, endurance, and burning calories. However While high intensity training for beginners, interval running, sprint interval training, interval training for weight loss may initially present themselves as appealing methods for torching calories and fostering muscle growth, they often fall short of fulfilling the expectations of the average fitness enthusiast. Many individuals seek a workout regimen that requires minimal mental effort—where they can simply show up, complete their repetitions, and engage in an environment that propels them to exert their utmost effort, resulting in burning legs and a profusion of sweat. Although these approaches might yield gains in the short term, it's important to recognize that sustained progress may wane over time, particularly for those grappling with pronounced imbalances like kyphosis (rounded upper back), knee valgus (buckling in), or other dysfunctions that hinder the proper activation of pertinent muscles during exercises. In our estimation fixing these dysfunctions yields the best results and also opens up the doorway to really get the benefits of interval training.
How Biomechanical Dysfunctions impact Interval Training
In the presence of a knee valgus for example, the gluteal (buttocks) muscles often fail to operate at their full capacity, thereby impeding progress in comparison to individuals without this condition. Similarly, individuals with kyphosis may find that their abdominal muscles exhibit inadequate development when compared to those with a more aligned spinal curvature. Establishing an absolute causal link between dysfunctions and muscle development remains complex due to the inherent diversity in human movement patterns and dysfunctions. These case scenarios are provided solely for illustrative purposes.
As these dysfunctions in the body remain present in the person doing the interval training workouts the result is often a recruitment of the favored muscle groups. Over and over and over again. Followed by a break. If poor movement patterns are repeated during interval training or interval strength training, injuries and pains start to come as result of the muscular imbalances and constant push promoted by interval training.
With Functional Patterns we are trying to get the right muscle groups to fire first before engaging something like an interval training interval strength training or sprint interval training workout. We are not saying you can't use interval strength training or sprint interval training once you have addressed some of your muscular imbalances and dysfunctions but the correct form must proceed the interval training most of the time if you really want to get the most from it and not get injured or be in pain.
Is your Interval training really that efficient?
In interval training in a traditional gym class, the focus lies in intensifying effort during the "high-intensity" phases, this is often achieved by riding an airdyne bike or engaging in strength training such as overhead barbell lifts in a group setting with a trainer walking around loosely checking form. These demanding intervals are succeeded by "recovery" or "rest" phases, allowing the body to recuperate before the next high-intensity segment. The primary objective is to elevate the heart rate during intense intervals and then facilitate its decline during the recovery periods.
A significant concern arises when emphasizing heart rate elevation in interval training or interval strength training without considering posture and movement quality. An illustrative scenario would be engaging in a 90-second interval training session focused on completing as many squat repetitions as possible. In this scenario, the primary focus wouldn't be on maintaining proper spine alignment or activating specific muscles during the squat movement. Rather, the emphasis lies solely on willpower and employing familiar mechanics to achieve repetition completion. Consequently, the outcome frequently involves leg fatigue, often asymmetrically distributed and utilizing the wrong muscle groups.
An alternative to interval strength training would be to prioritize good form and proper posterior chain activation during an FP style lunge, you would get more of a muscular burn in the right areas and increased functional muscle mass over time. Increased muscle mass helps you burn more calories because muscles are metabolically active tissues that require energy even at rest. The more muscle you have, the higher your resting metabolic rate, leading to greater calorie expenditure and improved weight management.
Detrimental effects of excessive interval training
Engaging in high-intensity intervals or interval training for weight loss without maintaining proper form can result in detrimental consequences. Fatigue sets in and muscles begin to stop working in areas they should. Consequently, improper posture may manifest, and also the likelihood of injury as the correct muscle groups pull on the bones and joints in an unfavorable way. This will further trigger the body's stress response in addition to the strain of a workout. As your gasping for air and your muscles are filled with lactic acid, poor form during your next exercise is likely to occur.
When pushing the body to its limits during interval training for weight loss, interval strength training or interval running, safeguarding proper posture and efficient motion becomes imperative. By doing so, the body is effectively trained to withstand the challenges presented by rigorous workouts. This is where "functional patterns training" enters the picture.
Functional patterns training takes a targeted approach to emphasize correct posture and efficient movement, particularly within the context of high-intensity interval workouts. Ensuring that the body maintains optimal alignment and motion, even amidst intense exertion, is paramount. This practice not only prevents immediate injuries but also cultivates long-term performance enhancement.
Is Interval Training the Right Choice for You?
Interval training can be beneficial for preparing for intense activities like MMA fights or tasks requiring high cardiovascular output. However, it's essential to consider a broader perspective.
Our training at Functional Patterns focuses on developing excellent running form that stays effective as we get older. Mastering how to move well is crucial for this. This means understanding how we walk and run, and using the right exercises to activate the correct muscles for better movement and over time better bone alignment.
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While interval sprint training can help improve running speed in the short term, it's important to emphasize proper form. These movements involve various muscles that influence how our bones adapt or potentially twist in harmful ways. If you do interval training with incorrect form, it could worsen existing imbalances instead of fixing them. This is why interval training or interval strength training is best used strategically rather than as a regular routine.
In conclusion, the realm of interval training, encompassing interval running, interval sprint training, and various interval training workouts, offers a dynamic approach to enhancing cardiovascular fitness, endurance, and calorie burning. While these high-intensity methods, including interval strength training, hold promise for beginners and seasoned fitness enthusiasts alike, the benefits often are short lived if proper movement patterns that engage the right muscles are not utilized.
The allure of interval training for weight loss, muscle growth, and improved performance can be captivating, but sustainable progress demands a holistic perspective. It's not just about torching calories and pushing through intense segments; it's about understanding the intricate dance of biomechanics and the impact of dysfunctions on muscle activation.
Embracing interval training with flawed form can amplify existing imbalances, hinder advancements, and even lead to detrimental effects. Engaging in interval training without prioritizing posture and movement quality can result in fatigue, compromised posture, and potential injury.
Therefore, the art of interval training, interval strength training or sprint interval training workouts is best optimized when coupled with the wisdom of proper form and functional patterns. Safeguarding posture, focusing on efficient motion, and aligning muscles and movements through "functional patterns training" create a foundation for both immediate gains and long-term performance enhancement.
In the grand tapestry of fitness, interval training remains a potent tool, harnessed strategically for various goals. Yet, its true potential is unlocked when approached with mindfulness, understanding, and a commitment to cultivating impeccable movement coordination. As you embark on your interval training journey, remember that each stride, each repetition, and each burst of intensity can be magnified through the harmony of form and function, leading to a symphony of empowered progress and enduring results.