Get Fit in 45 Seconds

I’m a lit­tle wor­ried about my risk of car­dio­vas­cu­lar prob­lems.  My dad began to have heart prob­lems in his 50’s (younger than I am now) and even­tu­al­ly died of car­dio­vas­cu­lar com­pli­ca­tions at age 72.

My LDL cho­les­terol is start­ing to creep up and my HDL is a lit­tle too low.  And late­ly, when I check my blood pres­sure, it’s 130/80.  I have to start tak­ing my car­diac health seri­ous­ly.

For­tu­nate­ly, I’ve man­aged to lose about sev­en pounds over the last year.  I exer­cise reg­u­lar­ly.  But….. I’m pret­ty lazy.

So if there’s an eas­i­er way to do some­thing, I’m total­ly in favor of it.

And recent­ly, in the light of new research, I’ve changed my approach to exer­cise com­plete­ly.

Goodbye to “cardio”

For years, the for­mu­la for heart-healthy exer­cise has been:

  1. Raise your heart rate to the tar­get zone (about 80% of your max­i­mum safe range, which is based on your age) and
  2. Keep it there for a min­i­mum of 20 min­utes.  Longer is even bet­ter.

There’s noth­ing wrong with this type of pro­gram.  You’re a heck of a lot bet­ter off if you fol­low it than if you’re a total couch pota­to.

But it turns out that it’s more impor­tant to get your heart pump­ing to its max­i­mum, even if it’s for briefer peri­ods.  The blood rush­ing through your arter­ies actu­al­ly scours out the bad plaque that’s build­ing up on the inside of your artery walls.  The faster you can get your blood flow­ing, the more effec­tive the flush­ing effect will be.

You’ll build more mus­cle and burn more fat with short­er bursts of intense exer­cise, too.

Welcome to HIIT Training: High Intensity Interval Training

Based on this research, here’s the new, sim­ple exer­cise plan I’ve sug­gest­ed to a lot of my patients:

  1. Run (or if you can’t run, walk) as fast as you can for 45 sec­onds.
  2. Then slow down for the next 45 sec­onds to catch your breath.  It’s okay if you slow to a jog or even a walk­ing pace. But make sure to keep mov­ing.
  3. Next, ramp up to your top speed for the next 45 sec­onds
  4. Con­tin­ue to alter­nate 45-sec­onds of intense activ­i­ty with 45-sec­ond cool­ing-off peri­ods.

Start your pro­gram with 6 high-inten­si­ty inter­vals, but if that seems impos­si­ble, make sure you pump it up to the max for at least 5 cycles (with 45-sec­ond cool­ing off peri­ods in-between, of course.)  Grad­u­al­ly, you can add addi­tion­al inter­vals – up to 8 or 10.

If run­ning is impos­si­ble for you, you can adapt the same inter­val pat­tern to cycling, the sta­tion­ary bike, ellip­ti­cal train­er, or any oth­er phys­i­cal activ­i­ty.  For instance, even if your fit­ness activ­i­ty is sim­ply tak­ing a walk, add a few flights of stairs in the mid­dle of your walk.  Jump­ing rope is anoth­er high­er-inten­si­ty activ­i­ty you can use for inter­val train­ing.

If you stick with this pro­gram 3–4 times per week, you’ll soon enjoy the results:

  • You’ll be able to run faster and recov­er more quick­ly.
  • You’ll build mus­cle.  And,
  • You’ll slash your risk of car­dio­vas­cu­lar prob­lems.

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About Ronald Lavine, D.C.

Dr. Lavine has more than thirty five years' experience helping patients alleviate pain and restore health using diverse, scientifically-based manual therapy and therapeutic exercise and alignment methods. His website,, provides more information about his approach. Please contact him at or at 212-400-9663.
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4 Responses to Get Fit in 45 Seconds

  1. Larry Thomas says:

    Your web­site is very nice.

    Can I get a plain Word copy of your inter­val train­ing arti­cle?

    See you in 2 weeks.

    Lar­ry T

  2. Pingback: High Intensity (HIIT training) Tops Exercise Duration

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