You need to boost your calorie burn during and immediately after the holiday season because let’s face it, there is a lot of temptation this time of year. Yet there is a problem with your plan to burn more calories and that is you have less time during this busy season. How do you up your calorie burn while at the same time spend less time working out? The answer is to create an exercise “afterburn” that will keep your body burning fat at a faster rate for up to 36 hours after your workout ends.

Let’s get real! You overeat all of those sweet sugary treats during all of those holiday parties that you attend. You plan to burn more calories but you’re busy running around like an idiot shopping, attending events, and writing Christmas cards to people who you wouldn’t otherwise contact the rest of the year. How do you maximize your calorie burn so that you can cut down the amount of workout time so that you have time to buy junior his airsoft gun, cook Sally’s Christmas cookies, and attend the neighborhood New Years parties without becoming as round as Frosty the Snowman.

Right now you are probably telling yourself, “How could this possibly work!, I can’t exercise less and get the same results!” Well, truth be told, if you do nothing, you ‘ll get nothing. You have to work out to get results. Make up your mind to put in 15 to 20 minutes of good, hard, sweaty effort and you will most likely get better results than the slow trek on the elliptical trainer or exercise bike. I must give a disclaimer. This is not for the faint of heart or for those not willing to sweat like a mule.

What Should You Do?

If you didn’t realize it, the past standard for which we exercise enthusiasts believed was essential for weight loss was what my high school track coach used to refer to as “LSD”, Long Slow Distance. That meant jogging, or treadmill, or elliptical trainer or exercise bike for an hour or more. We should of called it “SBC” for Slow, Boring, Cardio because that is more accurate. How many of you have seen someone reading a book or magazine while riding an exercise bike. Come on people! How could that possibly be effective exercise?! To be totally honest, riding the exercise bike with your romance novel does burn calories but the problem is that once you are done peddling, you are done burning calories.

Is There a Better Way To Do It?

With all of the research on short duration, high intensity interval training where exercise intensity is varied during the session, It has been shown, through oodles of research that shorter exercise sessions that constantly vary the intensity at which you work have the added benefit of boosting your calorie burning metabolism and they also found that not only can this result in burning more fat, it can also put your body in a state of maintaining a higher level of calorie burning for up to 36 hours after you stop exercising. This is the “afterburn” that you want in order shorten exercise time and enhance weight loss.

According to Rod Barris, CPT, “HIIT: High Intensity Interval Training is the greatest way to burn fat by doing LESS cardio! HIIT is a VERY effective training technique used to decrease body fat, increase speed, increase VO2 Max and best of all: It only requires 20 minutes of your time to workout!

What this means to you is that you can work out hard for 15-20 minutes in a session and according to researchers you can create an after burn that will continue to burn calories up to 36 hours afterward. In fact, a East Tennessee State study in 2001 proved that interval training burned 100 more calories a day 24 hours after the exercise!

Research also shows that shorter exercise sessions will allow you to hold on to more muscle. Short, hard bursts of cardio, or calisthenics, the method that the military has used to “lean out” recruits for decades, will help you preserve hard-earned muscle mass while burning fat fast.

So now is the time. Get going with short duration, high intensity workouts. Save time, maximize calorie burn, and melt away that holiday fat!