The Red, White, and Blue Tabata Workout

Micki Pauley

Personal Training, Nutrition, Health


Ya gotta Tabata, right? When many of my clients hear this word, they typically cringe. Although, I love to see the looks on their faces as they anxiously wait to hear which exercises are on the Tabata menu.


So, what is a Tabata anyway? It is a 4 -minute high-intensity workout that can include anywhere between 1,2, or 4 exercises. You do work as hard as you can for 20 seconds and then you give yourself a 10-second rest before hitting it hard again. Depending on how many exercises are chosen and which they are, the 10 seconds rest can quickly become the transition period between exercises. Who needs a rest anyway? It’s only 4 minutes, right?



If you are truly giving it all you’ve got, Tabatas are certainly efficient. The amount of fat that can be burned during this high-intensity workout is well worth the 4 minutes! I use them as either starter to a workout (I typically choose more core-based movements on these as to not completely wear my clients out from the start), as a finisher or when in a time crunch – such as busy holidays!


While you can put all kinds of different exercises into a Tabata – core, plyometrics, lower body, upper body – I really enjoy using some form of compound or combo movements when creating them for a time crunch. This type of work puts more demand on the body – thus making you work harder!


Here is a sample workout I have written for members to complete during their 4th of July festivities!


I have 3 Tabatas written out! You can complete 1, 2, or all 3!


Tabata 1 - Red

2 DB Alternating Reverse Lunge with Front Punches


Tabata 2 - White

2 DB Squat + Shoulder Press
Crossbody Mountain Climbers
*You will alternate between the 2 exercises


Tabata 3 - Blue

Weighted Jumping Jacks
Russian Twists



This whole workout can only take you 4 minutes or longest, 12 minutes – both of which anyone can spare some time for! This 4th of July holiday, I am using these as part of my Warrior Body classes in my gym in Morgantown, West Virginia!


We're getting them in before the festivities begin and turning ourselves into a fat burning machine all day long! Are you ready to Tabata?!

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