Must Read: Bass on Recent Sprint-Training Study & Tabatas

Clarence Bass has another great article up on the benefits of sprint training. Subjects in a relatively recent study reaped significant benefits doing "four to seven "all-out" 30-second sprints on a bicycle ergometer with four-minute rest periods, six times over two weeks". They did not get the peak oxygen uptake or anaerobic work capacity benefits of Tabatas, however:

"Most strikingly," the researchers wrote, "cycle endurance capacity increased by 100% after [sprint interval training]." The time to fatigue cycling at about 80% of VO2max increased on average from 26 minutes to 51 minutes!

If you hate grinding out long cardio sessions, this is a must-read. For example:

"To our knowledge, this is the first study to show that sprint training dramatically improves endurance capacity during a fixed workload test in which the majority of cellular energy is derived from aerobic metabolism," the researchers reported. Impressively, the short period of very intense exercise produced improvements "comparable to or higher than previously reported aerobic-based training studies of similar duration." In other words, about two minutes of very intense exercise (15 minutes over 2 weeks) produced the same or better results than previously shown after two hours a day at about 65% of VO2max, or 20 hours over two weeks.

15 minutes vs. 20 hours. Yow.

The "Tabata Compared" section was of particular interest to me (obviously). Fantastic piece. By all means, click through...