Tag Archives: tabata

On the level

Holy soreness! I am still recovering from Tuesday morning’s weight sesh. Not only have my arms been sore, but my hammies have a special kind of hate for me. When I woke up this morning, not only did I not know why the hell my alarm was going off, but I could barely walk. Deadlifts and squats have a way of doing that to me.


Thankfully, I wasn’t dead (even though I felt like I had zombie legs) and I did realize that the reason my alarm was going off was because I had a class to get to!

When I was making a plan of attack for today, I knew that I wanted a couple of tabatas mixed in with some hills and speedwork. I was looking for new tabata songs when I stumbled upon Beth Alexander’s blog. Thanks to her, today’s class came together very easily. I used her “Level your playing field” ride with a few tweaks. Also, thanks to Beth, I have a new way of putting together my ride profiles so it’s easier for you to understand and use. Big round of applause for Beth! Woo!

The idea behind this ride is that you go through four different levels:

  1. easy: just like it sounds…easy peasy
  2. moderate: still feeling comfortable, you could carry on a conversation with the rider next to you
  3. hard: getting uncomfortable, legs starting to burn, difficult to speak
  4. very hard: uncomfortable, breathless, no speaking possible

Typically I use a 1-10 scale for RPE (rate of perceived exertion). This is basically the same, but a bit more simplified. I liked the idea of having four easy levels to hit. This ride is 45 minutes and if you are hitting those levels, it’s a doozy with a great playlist. FYI- The “Wild Night” that I used was the Van Morrison version, but I can’t find it in Spotify, so John Mellencamp is in there. Also–I can’t find the AC/DC version of Thunderstruck on Spotify. 

On the level

You can download this handy PDF!

Now if you excuse me, I’ll be trying to stretch out these hamstrings! I see some downward dog and forward bends in my near future.


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Interval Training

As I sit at my table writing this, I’m pretty sure I resemble Goldie Hawn in Overboard.

Buh buh buh buh buh is right. After 45 minutes, the tiny man is FINALLY asleep. In order to make this happen, I had to listen to 35 minutes of hysterical crying. Not all in a row mind you. I’m not a monster mom. This was AGONIZING for me. I did let him cry for 10 minutes at a time though. Each minute feels like an hour. Worst thing for a mom ever! My heart has never hurt so much. The hubs told me I need to set a timer because the tiny  man is starting to get smart. He is like a little tiny spy. Trying to figure out our weaknesses. Tricky little tiny man. We are bigger. We are smarter?

So, I let the tiny man cry in intervals: 10 minutes on, 5 minutes off. Kind of like my spin class this morning. Tabatas. 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off. I’d rather do tabatas for days then listen to that crying though. The crying is just him testing me. I have to stay strong. Just like getting through those 8 rounds of tabatas. Isn’t this a great analogy today?!?!? If you’re not a parent, it probably isn’t that great.

Let me just say, when the crying was finished and the sleep won out…I rejoiced. It felt as if I was a unicorn galloping on a rainbow! Reminds me of a Lisa Frank folder.


Ah, Lisa Frank. Yes, I am a child of the 90s. Anyhoo, I’m sure my class felt this way when the tabatas were over too. If you can’t tell, class today was HIIT. The spin had 3 tabatas. A sprint tabata, tabata on a medium road, and a strength tabata. Basically, each time we did a tabata, a bit more resistance was added. Say it with me ta-ba-ta.

The (you guessed it) tabatas are pretty killer. They definitely get you working in that anaerobic zone! In between each tabata was working recovery and a couple hills were in there too. Here is what class looked like today:

  1. Warmup
  2. Jumps on a medium hill, 2 resistance changes
  3. Recover 1 min, 8 rounds sprint tabata, recover 1 min
  4. Run w/resistance in 2nd  & 3rd position
  5. Recover 1 min, 8 rounds medium road tabata
  6. Working recovery in 2nd & 3rd
  7. Rolling hills
  8. Medium to heavy hill (3 resistance changes), seated to standing
  9. Working recovery in 1st
  10. Strength tabata- 4 rounds seated, 4 rounds in 3rd
  11. Recover
  12. Stretch

And here was the soundtrack to class:

tabata time

So, there you have it. Nothing like a little tabata to get your Monday started on the right foot!

Also, even though the tiny man was being a crank nugget, I still was able to bake banana bread, regular bread, and peanut butter cookies. Multi-tasking at its finest. Now, I’m off to enjoy this peace and quiet while it lasts. Hopefully I have at least another 5 minutes!




Filed under Baby G, Class Profiles, Let's talk about spinning, Music

It’s…Tabata Time!

Cue excited face…


I can feel your excitement. Probably the same as my spin class. Whenever I mention tabata a look of hate starts to creep in to their eyes. I don’t take the hate personally, I take it as I am doing my job. I’m making them work for it. I mean, you don’t come to a class (any class) to take it easy. Well, maybe restorative yoga, but that’s about it. You come to work. You come to change your body. You come to change your mind. You come to prove something to yourself. And that is what tabata is great for…pushing yourself to your limit. To leave it all out there. To sweat your little heart out.

Tabata is the hot workout word right now, but if you aren’t up on all the hype, here’s the dealio:

  • It’s named after Dr. Izumi Tabata
  • It’s a HIIT workout (high intensity interval training)
  • It requires an all out effort for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of recovery for 8 rounds (4min total)
  • Did I mention it’s intense?
  • It’s recommended to be done no more than 1-2 times a week

The great thing about tabata workouts is that they pack a punch without a ton of time commitment and can be done with a really wide variety of exercises. I have been wanting to do a tabata ride for a while and figured that Monday was the day.

The class profile is pretty simple. The gist:

  • Climb with 3 turns to the top
  • working recovery
  • tabata
  • working recovery
  • and repeat two more times

The tunes:


I did vary the climb songs a bit. The first climb (Black Cat) wasn’t as heavy as the last (Express Yourself) and the middle (Electric Ave) was jumps on a hill. The working recovery was important so that everyone could have enough energy to give 100% for the tabata and then be able to recover properly before starting to work again. I also varied the tabata songs by how much resistance was used. The first two were strength based tabatas. The first (Applause) was at a 7-9 for 20 seconds and then recovering at a 5. The second (Bad Medicine) was at a 8-9 for 20 seconds and recovering at a 6. The last tabata (Ho Hey Remix) was a sprit and was at a 6 for 20 seconds and recovering at a 4.

So what should tabatas feel like? Well, kinda like death. The first two to three should be manageable, but by the end you should be in an anaerobic zone. It really is more of a mental game. You have to believe you can do it and then push yourself through what you think you can do and give it a bit more. If you do this workout right, it should be tough– really tough. You should be begging for that working recovery song.


The quote above is so true. You can’t just stay in your comfort zone. Well, you can, but you won’t ever see change. That goes for workouts and for life! How are you pushing yourself today?

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Filed under Class Profiles, Let's talk about spinning, Music