Want to get fit quick without a gym or changing your diet Then you should probably have a gander at the Tabata protocol.

Pitched as a no-fuss way to get fit, ripped and a lot healthier in the shortest space of time possible, it was developed working with the Japanese Olympic speed skating team and has had the fitness world frothing at the gills ever since.

Here’s the low down…

Who's doing it?

Superheroes. Chris Hemsworth AKA Thor and Henry ‘Superman’ Cavil both got fit with Tabata in preparation for their pants and cape performance, and supermodel Elle Macpherson is also a big fan of the intense workout.

Essentially, anyone with the word 'super in their job title, which should make it a no-brainer really...

Why you should check it out:
It's a home work-out program, which means you'll save cash on gym fees and don't have to face the embarrasment of exercising in front of proper gym junkies if you're actually more of a 'gym flunkie.'

You also get results quick without having to give yourself annual pep-talks in front of the mirror with the Rocky theme blaring out in the background.

What is it:
20 seconds of intense exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated 8 times. Which clever science types have proven to be the most effective way of improving both aerobic and anaerobic fitness.

Used correctly you'll continue to consume calories for up to 12 hours afterwards.
 
How it works:
By stressing the aerobic and anaerobic systems maximally – it pushes you to your limit to gain the maximum benefit. Which basically means that if it's not hurting, it's not working.

You need to go full-on hell for leather for the entire four minutes, until you can't work anymore to get the benefits afterwards.

The exercises
Start with a full 10 minute warm-up to mobilise your joints and muscles in preparation for four minutes of pedal to the metal style exercise.

Then do one of the exercises below, working as hard as you can for 20 seconds, take a well-earned 10 seconds rest and then start again. Do this two times a week and you’ll notice a difference within a fortnight.

Rotating Lunge

Areas Trained: Legs, glutes and core.
Technique: Start in a lunge, arms in a circle. Swing the arms round to one side, then jump the lunge on to the other leg, swinging the arms in the opposite direction. Use the arm swing to provide momentum.

Frog Jump

Areas Trained: Legs and glutes.
Technique: Start in a squat, then jump in the air, knees tucked up. Repeat quickly.

Single Leg Burpee

Areas Trained: Leg, glutes, biceps, triceps and shoulder.
Technique: Start in the press up position, jump in on one leg, then jump up with the opposite knee into the chest. Repeat on the other side. For less advanced, use a normal burpee – ie jump in and up on both legs.

Single Arm Kick Through

Areas Trained: Biceps, triceps, core, glutes and legs.
Technique: Start in a press up position, then taking the weight on the right arm, kick to the left with the right leg. Alternative left and right quickly. For less advanced, keep both hands on the ground and alternate knees to hest rapidly.

For more Lazy Man's Guide to Fitness check out: 5 steps to beat your beer belly.

As told to FHM by Professor Tabata, find out more at www.tabataofficial.com