Q n A Aug 30th – Sprinting?

challenge workouts

Question: I’m struggling no matter what I do I can not seem to lose this belly. My glutes are getting there little by little but my abs haven’t changed at all. I already eat clean, I workout 6 days a week and constantly challenge myself. Currently the only thing really lacking from my workouts is running which I’m trying to get back into. I’ve done your pull up program, getting ready to start it again and one week out from finishing another program. I’m 42 year old mother of two toddlers and work full-time in a desk job but I sit on a ball instead of a regular chair. Please help!

Answer: I don’t recommend running to address your belly fat. Take a look at these blog posts here and here (read the study in this one). Research supports HIIT or burst training over slow cardio/jogging/running for best fat loss results.I highly recommend doing jump rope or burpees, or anything over running to reduce belly fat. Unless you LOVE to run for the euphoria that you experience (as you can probably tell I never experienced any euphoria, except when it was over). Really it’s the intensity that you bring to your workouts that will help with the belly fat. Sadly if you’re one to hold weight in your belly, it’s the last to go, but stay the course, you CAN make a dent in it. Let me know if this helps and what I can do to further support you. Shawna


sprinter body 1Now that I slammed running, I want to take it all back….well, not really, I want to talk about SPRINTING. If you’ve ever participated or watched and sprinting events, you see that those sprinters are doing something right.

I brought it up in yesterday’s post that hill sprints are one of my FAVORITE go – to workouts. I also had a video with Daryl Devonish discussing sprinting.

I have another friend, Dennis Heenan who uses sprinting for fat loss. Now I know what you’re thinking: I’m worried about injury…I’m too old…I hate training outdoors…I don’t see the benefits…I’ve never done it before, maybe it’s too late for me…No worries. I’ve got you covered. Take a look at these answers from Dennis below to see why YOU should consider adding sprinting to your workouts:

I am too old for sprinting, what other options do I have?

This is a question I get quite a bit and is one I love to answer. See, sprinting comes in many different forms. Most people think of someone going out to a track and running 100 meters as fast as possible when they think of sprinting. Although this is a form of sprinting, this is not the only form. I define sprinting as “certain exercises that you do at your highest intensity for a short period of time.” That means exercises such as burpees, jumping rope, mountain climbers, sprints in place, etc. can all be considered a sprint when done properly.

For some of my beginner clients, even exercises like jumping jacks or bodyweight squats will do the trick. The key is to force your body to work near or at your anaerobic threshold for a short period of time, rest and repeat. That is what will allow you to maximize your fat burning and see accelerated results.


What would you say are the top three alternatives to outdoor sprinting?

If you do have access to the outdoors, hill sprints are a great option for someone who is just starting out. Hill sprints are easier on the body and allow you to have a bit more control during the sprint.

For indoor exercises, I love burpees, jumping rope, and sprints in place. All three of these force you to push incredibly hard and are proven to bring great results. Other exercises I would include are kettlebell swings, the rowing machine (one of my go-to’s in the winter), squat jumps, and mountain climbers.


Why is sprinting so much better for me than other forms of working out?

When you sprint, you force your body to work incredibly hard. And research has shown us that the closer we work near our anaerobic threshold, the more fat utilization occurs. This means that the higher intensity you go, the more fat you will end up burning during and after your workouts.

Much like Shawna’s challenge workouts, I have developed my own system in which I call ‘Compete Workouts’. What these workouts do is force your body to stay at that anaerobic threshold for longer to help utilize more fat burning. Plus, when you stay at such a high intensity during your workouts, they only have to be 10-20 minutes long to get the job done! Not too bad if you ask me!


What are the top 3 benefits of sprinting?


  1. You utilize and burn the most fat from your workouts when you sprint.
  2. Intense workouts like sprints promote optimal levels of both growth hormone and testosterone, which play an enormous role in keeping us strong, lean, and healthy for both men and women.
  3. They are the most powerful physique-shaper in a human’s arsenal. Sprinting is the all around greatest exercise for the human body.

There are plenty more benefits that sprinting brings, but those are the most powerful.


What if I have never done a sprinting workout before?

Completely fine! I have clients that have never exercised before come to me and we start with a form of sprinting. Now as I stated before, we will start with a variation such as jumping jacks or mountain climbers. The last thing you want to do is go out and sprint full speed if you haven’t done it in a while or ever before.

Sprinting should be a progressive workout, which means you build up as time goes on. This allows you to always push your body so you continually get great results. If you’re a beginner, start out slow. That is key. After a few weeks, your body will be more prepared for more fun and challenging sprint workouts.


Here’s a little workout from Dennis:

  • Sprint in place 30 seconds (or do sprinting option)
  • 10 reps of push ups, squat jumps, burpees
  • Rest as needed

Repeat 4 times

You can check out 18 more workouts from Dennis (for only $9)  HERE

dennis superhero sprints








As promised, I have another video for you. This one has a special guest and what HE thinks is the best training tool in it, (you’ll have to watch it to see what and whom).

I love jumping rope and I love DB complexes so I decided to film one of my workouts this week. Here’s the workout where I pair the two. This is what you’ll do:

  • 50-100 jumps
  • 10 high pulls
  • 10 single leg RDL
  • other leg RDL
  • 10 push ups

Repeat 3-5 times

Grab more Challenge Jump Rope workouts here. (Sorry, I’ll have to get Sev to work on the rubber boot workout program for you).

Your thoughts? More videos? More sprint workouts? More jump rope? More complexes? More rubber boot workouts? 😉