Tabata workouts, are they a fad, a trend or the real deal?

Last night I tried a Tabata workout for the first time. If you haven’t heard of them yet, check out the official Tabata Protocol website for more information. I was intrigued because it claims to give you the most amazing workout in a mere 4 minutes, plus 5 minutes of warm-up. Really? A great workout in under 10 minutes, sign me up!

Tabata isn’t new, it’s just gaining popularity right now. The premise is that you go hard for 20 seconds, then rest for 10 seconds, and repeat 8 times for a total of 4 minutes.

Before I started I downloaded a free Tabata Timer app from iTunes. I highly recommend doing this if you are going to try this workout because it beeps to tell you when to start and stop so you don’t have to look at a stopwatch.

I also researched which exercises were best to use with Tabata and I chose Burpees with a push-up followed by a jump. Why? Quite simply because I love them! Plus, they work your entire body.

Burpee push-up tabata workout
Doing burpee push-ups on push-up bars for my Tabata workout

So what do I think of Tabata? Well, I was definitely breathing hard at the end of my 4 minutes, but I wasn’t lying dead on the floor like many reviews I read claimed I would be. I didn’t slack off, I kept the proper form. I do feel like I got a bit of a workout, but I could have continued after my 4 minutes. I’m also not sore at all today.

Having said all of this, I’m going to give it another go tomorrow. As they say to give your body a rest day between Tabata workouts. I’m going to switch it up tomorrow and do a different exercise. Then, if necessary, I’ll go for another round making my workout 8 minutes in total. I might also switch it up between two different exercises. Review to follow…

UPDATE: As promised, I did a second review of Tabata-style workouts. Check it out here.

Have you tried doing a Tabata workout yet? If you are looking for some exercise ideas, check out my post where I found a good Tabata exercise.