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The build-up to Christmas is like a military assault course for those trying to maintain a healthy, balanced diet and exercise routine with obstacles like mince pies and bite-sized chocolate treats at every turn and a shopping schedule that cuts into your gym time.

If you’re finding it difficult to squeeze in a bit of exercise, rather than do nothing at all, focus your efforts on interval training. In his book, Burn Fat Fast, Patrick collaborates with health, fitness and exercise expert Kate Staples to bring you a selection of exercises to keep your body toned and your metabolism firing.

Interval training is Kate’s favourite cardio workout and, is the perfect routine to do if pushed for time. The added bonus of interval training is that it requires no equipment or time in the gym!

According to Kate, interval training – where you mix high intensity with low intensity exercise at different intervals – is the fastest route to shaping up because it really fires up your metabolism. Dedicate thirty minutes to this routine to keep your metabolism going and enjoy a guilt-free festive season!

For beginners:
Alternate spurts of lower intensity walking for 2 minutes with higher intensity walking for 2 minutes for a total of 30 minutes. Build up your fitness as you go by increasing the intensity of your spurts and the duration.

For more advanced:
For those of you who already have a base level of ‘fitness’, alternate spurts of 2 minutes’ walking with 2 minutes of jogging, or to push yourself even further, start adding jogging up hills or do 2 minutes of jogging and 2 minutes of harder running, or sprinting.