Many fit people will tell you that running is the best workout for toning your muscles and shedding unwanted pounds. Running works countless muscles in the body simultaneously, stimulates an increase in oxygen to your body and increases fitness endurance. Sprinting is simply short bursts of quick-paced running. It has recently become popular as a way to blast fat off any physique and when done properly, sprinting can be an enjoyable and effective way to exercise.
Sprinting creates something called the “after burn.” During cardio exercise, your body burns many calories in a short time. Resistance and weight training not only burn calories during the exercise itself but also for hours after the workout as the body recovers.This recovery period is referred to as the “after burn,” because your body burns calories for up to 24 hour as it repairs and rebuilds your muscles. Sprinting combines the quick calorie burning of a cardio workout with the muscle building and "after burn" of a resistance workout. Sprinting also helps you sculpt lean legs and abdominals.
The experts at Shapefit.com provide recommendations for anyone interested in incorporating sprint training into their workout. After a five to ten minute easy jog, beginners should start with a sprint of about 25-50 meters and more experienced runners should sprint a distance of 50-100 meters. This should be done 10 times, with one to two minutes of easy running or walking in between sprints, in a maximum of 60 minutes.
Add sprint training to your routine gradually to avoid injuries. Begin by sprint training once or twice a week, with two or three days of rest between sprint workouts. Avoid sprint training on days when you have lower body resistance training scheduled, because both of these types of workouts put strain on the lower body muscles. When sprinting, your arms should be relaxed at a 90-degree angle and move freely with the sprinting motion. You should focus on running on the balls of your feet, being mindful to keep your stride natural. Over-striding or under-striding can cause injury.
Sprinting around a track is very convenient because it allows you to roughly measure your distances. If you don’t have a track available, try using landmarks such as mailboxes or street lights to keep your distances consistent. Listening to music can help keep your motivation high while exercising, and wearing proper running shoes can prevent excessive strain on your feet. Always consult your physician before starting a new workout and most importantly, have fun.
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This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.