Should I Buy the 20-Second Workout?

The “20-Second Fitness” training program is a riff on the legitimate Tabata Interval method of high-intensity training. As a matter of fact, of all of the marketing-driven/created exercise programs that I have encountered over the years the underpinnings of this “20-Second Fitness” program are as solid as you can get. But that doesn’t mean that you should buy it.

As a matter of fact, the “20-Second Fitness” program gets a “Do Not Buy” recommendation. Here’s why with a little bit of background info.Tabata Intervals are a totally legit high-intensity training method. Researchers found that performing high-intensity intervals for 20-seconds on a stationary bike, with a 10-second rest, repeated over 4-minutes provided serious results.

The original study consisted of highly trained athletes in peak condition who were able to work much harder than the average person over these 8 intervals. During these intervals these subjects maintained a pace of 85 RPMs and their training heart rate was way above what the average person can achieve/maintain.


You should not try any extreme training that will elevate your heart rate beyond prescribed levels unless you are well-trained and are under proper guidance. This is not meant to offend, but there are very few people out there who are capable of performing true Tabata Intervals.

Do a Google search for “Tabata Intervals” and you will find plenty of info.

No doubt in an attempt to capitalize on the New Year’s Resolution crowd, the “20-Second Fitness” folks want you to buy stuff, but you do not really need any equipment to take advantage of the very real benefits offered by Tabata training. You certainly do not need to purchase DVDs and fitness accessories for $100.

This isn’t to say there isn’t a proper progression for regular folks who want to try Tabata Intervals, but the proper application of these intervals does not require equipment or DVDs.

As a matter of fact, if you do the Google search for “Tabata Intervals” you will find the site, TabataProtocol.com, which will give interested parties an excellent outline of an interval progression. The science behind “20-Second Fitness” is sound, but this doesn’t mean you should buy the program.


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