Thread: Started HIIT on a Bike
1/01/2009 2:07pm, #1
Started HIIT on a Bike
I've searched all the HIIT threads, and read a bunch of online articles, but I'm still a bit unclear about good HIIT and am looking for some reassurance/clarification.
I have this old exercise bike that I sit on for an hour a week for cardio in addition to my two training/sparring sessions and one high-rep weight circuit session.
Even though I feel like I could ride the bike all day, I tend to drop my hands after two minutes of every round as I start to fell tired - with the result that I get thumped. Figuring that HIIT would help, I tried the following routine for starters (excuse the vague terminology, but I don't have a heart monitor, and my bike doesn't tell me how many watts/rpm I'm doing).
Resistance was set to 7 out of 8.
5 min warm up at "intensity level" 4-5
60 secs at intensity 6 (about 16.5 mph)
30 secs at intensity 8-9 (ie, going like the clappers - about 22-25 mph)
repeated intervals 8 times.
5 min cool down.
The whole thing took 23 minutes and I was sweating like a rapist.
How does that sound - should I increase the reps, decrease the rest period, prolong the workout?
Happy new year, and thanks in advance.
Last edited by BaronVonDingDong; 1/01/2009 2:09pm at .
1/02/2009 1:33am, #2
My first thoughts are that for HIIT, sixty seconds probably isn't enough recovery time. The study discussed here had four minutes of rest between intervals.
On the other hand, the Tabata protocol is 2:1 work:rest, so it's not written in stone.
If it's possible, try to pick something measurable to improve on. Try a given program for a few weeks, and measure your results (and any side-effects encountered). If it's not giving you significant improvement, try a different program. A lot of this stuff is just repeated trial-and-error.
Also, for the hand-dropping problem, it may not just be confined to your general conditioning - I'd bet that there are habit and specific endurance components to it as well. Work on the appropriate mix of flexibility and endurance in the involved muscles if possible.
1/02/2009 2:10am, #3
A description of progressing to Tabatas from here.
Here is an example of a common interval progression we use (note that you can use various equipment for this, sprinting, airdyne, slideboard, etc.):
2-3 weeks – work = :30/ rest = 1:30 (start with 5 sets and add one per week)
2-3 weeks – work = :30/ rest = :60
2-3 weeks – work = :30/ rest = :30
2 weeks (modified tabatas)– work = :10 / rest = :20 x 4 minutes (that’s one set)
2 weeks (modified tabatas)– work = :15 / rest = :15 x 4 minutes (that’s one set)
2 weeks (tabatas) – work = :20 / rest = :10 x 4 minutes (that’s one set)
This can be modified to whatever is right for the athlete. Some athletes may spend more time in a specific progression than others, depending on their current conditioning, age, goals, fight notice, etc. It should be of the most importance that the athlete gets to negative work to rest ratios as soon as possible (without overtraining). So again, this is just an example.
1/02/2009 8:40am, #4
Thanks, guys. I'll work on it for a few weeks and let you all know.
1/02/2009 8:51am, #5
Hey glf, love that you're going to do some HIIT.
How many times do you plan to do that in a week? I find I can only manage two HIIT sessions a week otherwise my ability to recover for the next day seems to diminish and I tend to get some minor hyperextension injuries during my other training (weights, MA, plyo etc.)."I'm reluctant to sound like a total fa66ot as well, but my background in sculpture gave me an edge in understanding how we're expected to move thru space." - The Other Other Serge
1/02/2009 9:10am, #6
Hi Lily. Actually, I was just going to do it once to replace the long bike session I'm currently doing. This is in addition to the two sessions of boxing, and one of high-rep weights a week. Four exercise sessions is the absolute max I can manage without feeling like a zombie.
1/02/2009 9:20am, #7
Sounds good, hit those sessions hard!"I'm reluctant to sound like a total fa66ot as well, but my background in sculpture gave me an edge in understanding how we're expected to move thru space." - The Other Other Serge
1/02/2009 1:14pm, #8
1/02/2009 4:30pm, #9
Only when MA training is closed for the holiday season do I go for the 3 weeks of HIIT (5-6 days a week). My knees are pretty stiff this morning."I'm reluctant to sound like a total fa66ot as well, but my background in sculpture gave me an edge in understanding how we're expected to move thru space." - The Other Other Serge
1/03/2009 11:30pm, #10
- Join Date
- Dec 2004
Doing HIIT will increase your endurance, but not in the way you want (if I'm understanding you correctly).
You are doing HIIT on a bicycle, so you will make general gains in the function of your cardiopulmonary system, but the major endurance gains are going to take place at the muscular level (this includes growth of more cappilaries, increases or certain enzyes in the working muscles, etc.) These muscular gains will not occur in your shoulders because you are not working them on a bicycle.
The important question is what is causing you to drop your hands? Is it that the overall effort of sparring taxes you to the point that you just cant do anything (you would probably feel this as exhaustion without muscular fatigue in your shoulders). Or are your shoulders specifically failing to live up to the demands you are making (this would mean that you feel like you can still spar but you cant raise you arms).
If it is the former then a bicycle HIIT program will benefit you because the problem is that your heart/lungs aren't strong enough to supply oxygen at the rate your body is demanding.
If it is the latter, then a bicycle HIIT program will help (in that your heart and lungs will be better able to supply more oxygen and your legs will be better able to use less oxygen) BUT you will still have the inherent inefficient oxygen utilization in your shoulders, and therefore your gains will be limited.
It sounds to me as though the problem is muscular because your arms drop after a couple minutes of sparring, though you could ride a bicycle all day. This shows that your cardiopulmonary system is strong and the vasculature and energy kinetics of your legs are strong, BUT your shoulders are lacking.
My suggestion would be a HIIT program that works your shoulders and arms. You could do repetitive lifts, or overhead medicine ball throws, etc. etc. The point is to work the muscles that will be holding your arms up.
As far as the timing of intervals. A 1:1 work to rest ratio (with a prolonged time period, i.e. - longer than 30 seconds) showed more improvement in all endurance relevant parameters over a 30 s work to 4.5 minutes rest protocol in this 10 week study of runners:
Manipulating high-intensity interval training: Effects on ˙VO2 max, the lactate threshold and
3000m running performance in moderately trained males. Fahimeh Esfarjani a, Paul B. Laursenb
If someone cares to read the study, pm me and ill send you the file.