High intensity interval training, or HIIT, is all the rage in the fitness world today. Rightfully so, this type of training is quick and effective and one of the best ways to get in shape. HIIT basically incorporates any workout activity with alternating levels of intensity performed in short bursts.
The benefits of HIIT are available to anyone. There is no equipment needed and you can do it anywhere. It’s efficient because you can complete a fat-blasting workout in just 15-minutes versus spending an hour jogging on the treadmill to reap similar results. You can also burn more fat because you continue to burn calories up to 24-hours after a session. In addition to burning fat, you can maintain muscle mass. The extreme training is also beneficial to your heart by reaching anaerobic zone, which is when you can’t carry a conversation. The American College of Sports Medicine found that just 2 weeks of HIIT improves your aerobic activity equivalent to 6-8 weeks of endurance training. HIIT also stimulates the youthful human growth hormone within 24 hours of a session by up to 450%. Although some may not see this as beneficial, HIIT is intense and challenging.
Some ideas to start are running, sprinting, biking, and even rowing. You can also try high knees, or stair climbing at a track. Plyometrics, rapid and repeated stretches like jumping lunges, are also effective and can be done in your living room! Aim to complete 20-seconds of an all-out effort followed by 10-seconds of rest. Repeat this cycle 8 times for an extremely intensive workout. For moderate intensity aim for 30-seconds maximum and then 90-seconds of recuperation. Remember to begin with a 10-minute warm up before the intense training. Make sure you keep your HIIT workouts to a max of 3 times per week.
I know I can get in a rut with my treadmill workouts and love the chance to get outside when the weather permits. This training is ideal for people with time constraints. I hope to incorporate HIIT in my weekly routine.