Increasing the intensity of your training regime could halve the time it takes, according to new research.

The University of Canterbury study has shown that high intensity interval training could prove a time-saving alternative to traditional endurance exercise.

Where typical endurance exercise involves walking, running or cycling continuously for 20 to 40 minutes, high intensity interval exercise only requires only the half the time for the same results, University of Canterbury sports science expert Dr Nick Draper says.

"As a general rule, exercise for non-athletes wishing to improve their conditioning or fitness have tended be focused on lower intensity "fat-burning" exercise sessions. The logic behind this type of exercise has been based around the concept that fat is used as a predominant fuel source during exercise at this lower intensity.


"More recently exercise physiologists, those who study the effects of exercise on the human body, have started to examine the stress of exercise in more detail and exciting challenges to traditional thinking are emerging. The emergence of this research has also been closely linked to commonly cited lack of time as a key reason behind increased physical inactivity levels."

Draper will be giving a lecture on campus this Wednesday about the benefits of high intensity interval training, the importance of physical activity for health and other research findings.