Coaching football has taught me the secret exercise for fat loss – wind sprints. Intervals of sprinting mixed with jogging or walking. Running as fast as you can several time in a row with minimal rest. Wind sprints have become fashionable by other names like HIIT but wind sprints have been around forever. It’s not a new invention. Add strength training and proper food to wind sprints and you’ll get a transformation – physically and mentally.

I have seen my football players transform themselves with wind sprints and the weight room. Not small changes…transformation. I use a warp-speed no –huddle offense – one play every 8 seconds. It’s the equivalent of a 3-hour workout with 8-seconds rest. It takes intense training but every player on every one of my teams has achieved it. The majority of my players are not genetically gifted, naturally talented athletes. The majority started like all of us – the farthest thing from an athlete. The transformation included wind sprints – during practice and after practice.

Players start every season with the same attitude toward wind sprints – running has the same appeal as root canal. The announcement that starts formal sprint time is met with the same repulsion, like they’ve been asked to give up money. About 98% will not do sprints on their own. They need a coach yelling at them to do it. About 2% willing run sprints without having to be yelled at. But then it changes. We run sprints during practice to simulate the 8-second no-huddle. At fat peels off, as stamina grows, as they get leaner and meaner, everyone buys into sprints and lifting. It’s the feeling that becomes addictive. The feeling of being lean and mean.

Sprints never have been a secret but they’re one of the the secrets to fat loss. Anyone who has experienced football practice knew about the secret long ago. Football training is life-altering – weight room and running are detoxifiers, mentally and physically. A cleanse that rids the body and mind of built-up toxins. If you take out the full-equipment full-contact part of football practice, the rest of football training can be done by anyone. There’s nothing like it.