Welcome to HIIT 101, where we’ll be discussing high-intensity interval training or HIIT for short. As someone who has been using HIIT workouts to fuel my gains for several years, I can attest to the effectiveness of this training method. To me, HIIT workouts are reminiscent of my days training for sports in high school and college. They’re intense, challenging, and always leave me feeling like I’ve accomplished something. Despite the intensity, I find HIIT workouts to be incredibly enjoyable and a great way to stay in shape.
Traditionally, people combined cardio with weightlifting in their workouts. While this combination is good, HIIT offers greater success and is enjoyable to perform. HIIT alternates between short bursts of high-intensity exercise with periods of low-intensity active rest periods. The high-intensity and low-intensity intervals can range anywhere from 10 seconds to 4 minutes long.
HIIT can be performed within 30 minutes or less, including warm-up and cool-down, based on the intensity of the workout. The ability to provide similar health benefits to steady-state moderate-intensity exercise in much less time is the reason why HIIT is popular.
An example of HIIT is a workout consisting of alternating periods of all-out effort and recovery, such as 30 seconds of sprinting followed by 60 seconds of walking or jogging, repeated for a total of 20-30 minutes.
The benefits of HIIT
One of the best things about HIIT is that it is time-efficient. It allows you to achieve the same or greater benefits as traditional steady-state cardio in a shorter amount of time. HIIT can be done with little or no equipment and can be modified to fit any fitness level. This makes it an accessible and convenient workout option for those with busy schedules.
HIIT can increase fat loss by burning more calories both during and after the workout. The afterburn effect, or EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption), is the reason behind this. The intense nature of HIIT workouts help retain lean muscle mass. That is important for maintaining a healthy metabolism and burning more calories at rest. Additionally, research suggests that HIIT may help reduce abdominal fat. Given these points, studies have linked abdominal fat with an increased risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease.
HIIT 101 summary
In conclusion, HIIT is an effective and efficient way to achieve fitness goals. It easily modified to fit any fitness level, requires minimal equipment, and takes less time than traditional workouts. HIIT provides a challenging, enjoyable, and effective workout that can help you reach your fitness goals in no time.