Sweatin’ With Izumi

Izumi Tabata.

That name alone causes my butt to clench and makes me break out in a cold sweat.

Mr. Tabata invented a type of high intensity interval training, otherwise known as HIIT.  (As in, “Don’t hiiitttt me again with that move!”)

“High-intensity interval training is an enhanced form of interval training.  It’s an exercise strategy alternating periods of short intense anaerobic exercise with less-intense recovery periods. HIIT is a form of cardiovascular exercise.  Usual HIIT sessions may vary from 4–20 minutes. These short, intense workouts provide improved athletic capacity and condition, improved glucose metabolism, and improved fat burning.”

Professor Tabata’s “regime,” initially involving Olympic speedskaters, uses 20 seconds of ultra-intense exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated continuously for 4 minutes (8 cycles).

Today at my exercise class we did a full 20 minutes.  It’s been said if you aren’t seeing stars and feeling as if you’re going to croak on the spot, you aren’t working hard enough.

I think I saw my life pass before my eyes, so I guess my session was a success.

Afterward, we had a wonderful 30 minutes of cool down and yoga stretches.  Our instructor, Shannon (AKA the Energizer bunny), told us this was designed to bring our “Chi” down from the high level where we were functioning.

“Chi” is the Chinese term for life force or life energy.

As we began, Shannon said her “Chi” was poking out all over her.

To this I replied:  “With  me, it’s more like Chee-tos.”

Tabata—When garden variety torture won’t do.



7 thoughts on “Sweatin’ With Izumi

  1. Congratulations! I consider it ‘High Intensity” if i do a couple of tall steps on the stair climber, then go back to climbing at a leisurly pace. Or sometimes just eating those Cheetos a little bit faster… suspect he wouldn’t count that either….


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