I wrote a post a while back now about how effective interval training was but the problem that you can have when you’re trying to do it is knowing when to rest and went to start again.
To overcome this problem myself, I bought a kitchen timer initially which was okay it had four consecutive timers which you could have running simultaneously.
However, it was quite awkward to use as you had to click around each timer to see where it was. What I used to do was set it up for five minutes and then do different pieces of exercise in rotation.
But unfortunately it wasn’t really what I needed, to do the job properly. When you’re doing interval training you need a reasonable degree of accuracy to time your intervals, which will give you the best results in the short a space of time.
So while I was browsing on you tube, I saw somebody doing some exercises using three pieces of exercise equipment and using a timer as well. But at the time thought nothing more of it and left it at that. Later on I came across another video of somebody using something similar and did a small bit of research.
And came across something called a Gym Boss interval timer, at first when I bought it, I wasn’t sure whether it would do what I wanted it to do. So as you do when you first buy these pieces of technology, I sat there pressing buttons and eventually thought to myself this won’t do what I wanted it to do.
Eventually, after much button pressing and faffing about, I realised it would after all do what I thought it would do. When I initially set it up first I thought I could only have so much time, and then I would have to keep pressing buttons to keep creating the intervals.
However, to my surprise that wasn’t the case I found out that I could have say a workout programmed for one minute of steady exercise and then one at a higher intensity for a short period of time. Which for me was ideal because it is what I wanted.
Here are the settings and what you can do with it, you have an option of 99:99 minutes, which can be your interval when you first programme it. You can then add some more functionality to this first timer and, let’s say you want to work out for one minute intervals on a variety of exercises.
A typical example would be one type of exercise using dumbbells for one minute intervals. So you set your timer up for one minute in manual mode press the start button and the timer will run for one minute and then bleep for one second so you know that your first interval is done then all you need do is press the start button again for your next interval.
Now if you want to add more functionality to this you can this to you can do so. Which is one of the great things about this particular timer, let’s look at the above scenario again and see what other things we can do with it, to add even more to our work out. What we can do next is set the timer up so it goes in a loop until we stop it.
So using our one minute reference we set the timer for one minute again, except this time instead of using manual mode, we use automatic. What this will do is once we start the timer going it will count down for a minute then bleep until we stop it. So now you don’t have to keep pressing the start button in order keep restarting the interval.
If you want to stop the timer you press the start button in for about three seconds, and then it will stop, when your intervals are counting on the left-hand side you will see 00 displayed when you first start.
Then as you do more you can see the amount you have done so let’s say you want to do 10 minutes. You will have to remember roughly where that is, but if you have the timer where you can see it then you will know because on the left-hand side it will display 10.
When you have finished your 10 minute workout say you press the start button for three seconds and it will stop and reset the timer. Next what you can do for more flexibility is set the timer for two different interval times this will be displayed on the right-hand side the top one is your main timer and the one below that is your interval or rest period which ever you prefer.
So using the one minute example again we set the main timer for one minute and a rest period of 30 seconds alternatively we can use this for our intense period so we would have 30 seconds of a high intensity and one minute at the low intensity.
And the same applies for both manual and automatic operation. The final thing you can do is put in up to 99 repetitions or intervals. So if you want to exercise for one minute and have a period of five minutes overall you set the timer up in automatic mode until a box comes up, and you put your total workout time in there.
Once you have finished your workout and the time has elapsed it will beep for 15 seconds so you know that your workout has finished. At the end of each interval period you can set the timer to 1,5 and 10 second beep times alternatively you can use vibrate mode just in case you are listening to music or in a noisy environment.
And to quickly go through all the features quickly I have done a video demonstrating how it works and how easy it is to set up as well. This is something I highly recommend if you want to time your workouts accurately it does have a multitude of uses you can even use it as a stopwatch if you wish.
Here are the features of it:
- One or two different time intervals from 2 seconds to 99 minute
- Auto mode keeps repeating through intervals
- Set up to 99 rounds
- Manual mode acts as countdown timer
- Stopwatch Function
- Alarm by beep, vibration, or both
- Alarm duration of 1, 5, or 10 seconds
- Size of a small pager
- (1 3/4 x 2 1/4 inches)
- Water and shock resistant
- AAA battery required
For more information see Gym Boss’s site.