HappyFitness Friday! Today I wanted to talk to you about my favorite way to end my workouts- INTERVAL TRAINING!Sprints are the best type of Cardio training for golfers because if you think about it, it mimics what golfers go through during a round.
Golf is a sport that requires SHORT, QUICK BURSTS of intense energy, with long periods of rest in between. Therefore, hopping on the elliptical for 45 minutes at a moderately intense pace is doing nothing for your golf game (sorry!) besides burning calories.
If you want to get the most out of your cardio workout to benefit your golf game and also help your body, here are a few reasons to try Sprint Interval Training:
You can burn more calories in a shorter period of time!
You will burn more fat!
You will increase your metabolism!
You are preparing your body for the golf course!
In golf, the most important piece of equipment we have is OUR BODIES!They are more important than any new club or ball we may try…trust me. If your body is not in “Golf Shape”, you may fatigue towards the end of a round, leading to bad habits and increased susceptibility to injuries.
If you want to train your body efficiently to play golf, Sprint Interval Training is the way to go! Training this way prepares your mind, muscles, and heart for competition and performance on the golf course. By doing Interval Training, we train ourselves for the quick EXPLOSIONS of energy that are similar to those happening in the golf swing. In between these spurts of energy, there are long periods of rest and recovery (walking in between shots, waiting for your partner to take 6 practice swings, etc…)! Therefore, by doing Sprint Interval Training, we are mentally ready for these regular alterations in activity and requirements for energy, and our muscles and heart are used to being always primed for any upcoming challenge!
Here are a few examples of Sprint Interval Training that I encourage you to try in your next workout! These can be done on any type of cardio equipment (bike, treadmill, rowing machine, elliptical, etc.) or even outdoors! As always, if you haven't exercised for some time and you have health concerns, it is always advisable to talk to your personal physician before starting a new exercise routine. My personal favorite intervals are on the treadmill, with resistance bands, or running outside!
BEGINNER SPRINT INTERVAL WORKOUT:
20 Minutes on Cardio Equipment of Your Choice!
10 x 2:00 Minute Circuits
0-1:30 would be at a moderate pace where you are comfortable exercising for long periods of time. This will be your rest/recovery state. You should be able to talk while doing this interval. This could be a walking pace on the treadmill for some and even up to 7 MPH for an advanced runner.
1:30-2:00 would be a highly intense pace. Not quite an “all out sprint” but you will definitely feel your heart rate and breathing rate rise. You should be able to speak a few words, but need to take a few breaths before speaking a full sentence here! This could occur at a jogging pace for some and up to 10+ MPH for advanced runners.
Note that the moderate and intense cycles will occur at different paces for everybody! Ideally, this would be based off of heart rates, but the talking scale is a bit easier for everyone to monitor!
Repeat that 2 minute cycle 10 times, and I guarantee you will burn more calories and have dramatically better results for your body than a moderate intensity cardio workout!
INTERMEDIATE SPRINT INTERVAL WORKOUT:
Outdoor Sprints or Cardio Sprints
10-30 second sprints with as much rest as needed in between
If you are serious about trying to develop power, “All-out Sprints” are the way to go! These can be done outside or on any piece of cardio equipment, however I highly recommend you are experienced with cardio equipment before trying, and, again, consult with your physician if there are any health concerns! No injuries please!! If you are working on creating more power in your golf swing, you will want to give your body enough time to recover so that you can have the maximum power in each sprint. I typically end each gym workout with six to nine 20-30 second sprints. I do mine on an incline treadmill (8-9%) at 9-10 MPH. Video below is showing 8% incline at 9 MPH!
ADVANCED SPRINT INTERVAL WORKOUT:
Undoubtedly the hardest Interval Training I have tried! I learned this from Annika Sorenstam’s trainer, Kai Fusser, with whom I was fortunate enough to have a session with at one of our LPGA Symetra Tour events! I had to try this in front of some of my peers and although I do sprint training on a regular basis, this was HARD!
Start by UNPLUGGING your treadmill. Yes, you heard me correctly. To do this correctly, you will spend about 4 minutes total on the treadmill. Start by walking with your hands on the treadmill. This will feel much harder and slower than a normal walk because YOU are manually operating the machine! WOW. By doing this, you are controlling your speed and the treadmill instead of the other way around.
Spend 4 minutes on the treadmill. Start with a walk and work your way up to a jog. Your sprints will be anywhere from 10-20 seconds with 20-30 seconds of rest in between. This will really work you!
In sum, try incorporating Sprint Interval Training into your regular workouts, and I promise you and your golf game will reap the benefits! Remember that our minds and bodies are the most important assets, more important than any club in our bag! Training efficiently for our sport is essential in getting your game to the next level!