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Mike Quon 04-25-2006 06:53 PM

One of my favourite conditioning exercises is doing intervals on my exercise bike but I'm a bit confused as to how to arrange the intervals themselves. Some online resources say sprint for 30 seconds, rest for 30 seconds. Others say 20/30, 10/30, etc. etc.

Currently I use a 30:30 protocol and then when I start to fatigue I go to 20:30 and sometimes will finish with 10:30 intervals finishing at around 12-15 minutes total.

IS this approach effective or should I just stick with one work:rest ratio per session? Obviously I would last a lot longer doing a 10:30 session than I would a 30:30 session so the work:rest ratio would dictate the total session time. Currently I could probably only last 5 or 6 minutes using a 30:30 ratio exlusively, I change the ratio to increase my workout time.

One other question. As I fatigue, my RPM's lower dramatically towards the end of each sprint, should I keep pedalling despite the low power output or should I terminate the set?

Jeff Dale 04-25-2006 08:34 PM

Here's an article that may help you out:


Mike Quon 04-26-2006 07:18 AM

Good article, but it recommends 90 seconds rest between 30 second sprints. Isn't a shorter rest period needed to reap both anaerobic and aerobic benefits a la Tabata?

Martin Schap 04-27-2006 09:42 AM

I don't know much about the science here, but the key to Sprint 8 is that the intevals be "ragged edge" where you absolutely punish your body on every sprint, going so fast that it's almost impossible to keep going for the full 30 seconds. This is hard to do, even on 90 seconds rest. I've done it a few times and find that my workout is at its most intense either on a stationary bike or running outside. When I've done it on the C2 or the treadmill it's hard to work up to the desired intensity fast enough. That being said, I don't know if it's what you're after. Have you tried Tabata intervals? Those will put your face in the dirt pretty quick

Mike Quon 04-27-2006 06:05 PM

I like tabata's but I'm looking at other interval schemes so that I can mix it up.

Carl Herzog 04-29-2006 07:58 AM

From June 2003 Crossfit Journal:

Roll single die (or three dice) and for first roll multiply number by 10 for work interval.
Then roll second die and multiply by 5 for the rest interval.
Roll again and multiply by 2 total for number of intervals.

Great quote from that issue: "There are no bad intervals, only weak efforts."

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