Hello, Bike Tabata

Like the treadmill, the stationary bike can be a butt kicker. It’s currently my go-to machine to get my heart pumping and sweat dripping. Whether I’m busting things up at BurnCycle, joining a Spin and Sculpt class at my gym or going rogue on my own, I can trust that the bike will get the job done.

On days that I don’t have much time energy (pregnancy problems) to spare, I like to jump on the bike for a quick 30-minute tabata series. It’s the most efficient type of workout I can do if I’m short on time or energy. During a tabata, you are alternating 20 seconds of breathless work with 10 seconds of recovery. The recovery period of 10 seconds is actually too brief to fully recover and you enter the subsequent 20 seconds of work still out of breath, creating an oxygen debt. It’s great fun. For reals. Each tabata contains 4 rounds of 20 second/10 second periods… you can do anything for 4 minutes, right? Here’s the 30 minute drill…

Hello, Bike Tabata Routine

  • 0 – 6 Minutes: Warm up on flat ground (gear 10-12)
  • 6 – 10 Minutes: Tabata 1 – standing sprints with increasing gear every other round (example: 16, 16, 17, 17, 18, 18, 19, 19)
  • 10 – 14 Minutes: Recover at flat ground (gear 10-12)
  • 14 – 18 Minutes: Tabata 2 – sprints with RPM’s over 110. This can be in or out of the saddle. Gear should be lower than the first Tabata, perhaps 12-16.
  • 18 – 22 Minutes: Recover at flat ground (gear 10-12)
  • 22 – 26 Minutes: Tabata 3 – intervals targeting watts exceeding 200+. Ramp up gear to 18+ and work in a seated position.
  • 26 – 30 Minutes: Cool down at flat ground (gear 10 or under)

A few notes…

  • It’s helpful to have a monitor that displays watts, RPMs and resistance/gear for this workout, however you can still manage without.

  • Example gears are included above for reference. Do whatever works for you – this could mean more or less gear.
  • You can use a tabata timer app, or just go old school with a stopwatch or clock.
  • I do not wear a heart rate monitor, but instead go off perceived exertion (i.e. how out of breath I am).
  • This is not a workout routine for folks just getting into shape, but rather something to integrate into the mix once you’ve already established a fitness base.
  • I am not a trainer or a doctor for that matter. So, if you feel uncomfortable with any of this, it’s best to check in with a fitness or medical professional for input.
  • Here’s a treadmill tabata that I love

Any other tabata fans out there?

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