What is HIIT?

THIS IS HIIT

Simply put, HIIT is short for High Intensity Interval Training. Although the words “High Intensity” may be intimidating at first, you may be comforted by the fact that workouts are often a short and highly effective method for physical fitness. Essentially, what HIIT does is combine short alternating burst of high intensity workouts that are followed by shorter recover periods. Therefore giving you a unique blend of different exercises.

To accomplish this mix of effort, you would essentially start off with warming up your body with an aerobic exercise that would build up to your 100% burst and alternate as such. For example, you could jog for 30 seconds, do jumping squats for 30 seconds, and then jog for another 30 seconds. What your doing here is starting off with an exercise that requires a lower intensity workout(jogging) that works its way into a higher intensity workout (jumping squats) which then goes into a lower intensity workout (jogging). Your body is therefore constantly working. Alternatively, you could also do high intensity workouts that have a short resting period in between. High Intensity(30s), Rest (10s), High Intensity(30s), this combination is usually more practical especially when there are weights involved in which your resting period is a time in which to prepare for the next workout.

Adjusting Your Body

How Often Should You Perform HIIT?

The beauty about HIIT is that you do not need to do it very often, in fact 3 – 4 times a week is great. A typical 12 minute HIIT workout is equivalent to doing a 45 minute run on a treadmill. So you can see how you don’t need to do it too often. You are doing the same amount of workout is a shorter amount of time, and you feel good doing it as well. The beauty about it, is that you can combine it with other types of training as well, you could do HIIT with resistance training or even HIIT with yoga.  The only question you may be asking yourself is “how long should my workouts be?”.

How Long Should I Workout For?

When starting out, test your body limits out, only do a 6-8 minutes workout that will get you comfortable. Your body is going to need time to adjust. As you become stronger and more capable then 9-15 minutes workouts are ideal for a short and compact workout. As you become even stronger, 15-30 minutes will become ideal as they impact your body immensely in burning fat and getting you lean.

Eating Right Matters Too

Fruit Fiber CerealHIIT may help you burn that extra fat fast, but like all things a healthy diet is always necessary. Put the right foods in your body, give your body the right workouts, and watch it bloom. Fuel your body with greens, proteins and water. Only then can you actually really enhance your HIIT workouts.

Training With HIIT

How Does HIIT compare to other exercises?

Nobody says that other exercises are bad, and no one is saying that one is better than the other. Essentially, it’s a matter of what suits you. Maybe a lower intensity works for you. Let’s look at how much calories burned by other types of exercises compared to HIIT

Calories Burned in Half Hour (out of 1000 calories)

Strength Training
133 Calories
Yoga
178 Calories
Jogging
199 Calories
Zumba
350 Calories
HIIT
450 Calories

As you can see HIIT can burn the most amount of calories in the least amount of time. It’s fun too!

 

There are different types of HIIT programs that have different styles.

The Farltlek Method

This method was first developed to improve the performance of runners. This is the HIIT that you may be familiar with seeing on on a treadmill. It is designed to vary the intensity in different portions of your workout. As for example, on a treadmill the intensity (speed, incline) change to give you a high intense workout and then lower your speed for a low intensity interval. An example of this would be:

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    Warm up (easy jogging), 5 minutes

    Simple jogging in one spot will do if you cannot jog in an area

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    Hard Running, 2km

    1.24Miles

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    Recovery: Walk 5 min

    This period will give you a chance to relax and regain strength

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    Sprint 50 meter, easy running 1 min, 50 meter sprint (repeat)

    Repeat this exercise

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    Easy Running, 5 min

    Jog/run lightly

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    Sprint until tired

    Do a full on sprint until your body is tired

Tabata Regimen

The most popular of the HIIT program, this involves explosive bursts followed by short recovery (i.e. 10 seconds) and is done in a number of sets.

Here is a small example:

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    Push Ups, 20 seconds

    Good to start off with your hardest exercise

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    rest, 10 seconds

    Prepare for next exercise

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    squats, 20 seconds

    Put emphasis on doing the correct technique

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    rest, 10 seconds

    Prepare for next exercise

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    lunges, 20 seconds

    Alternate lunges when doing them

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    repeat

    Repeat exercise in a few more sets

The exercises do not necessarily have to change, you could essentially be doing one type of exercise (i.e. lunges only) instead of changing up your type of exercise after every 10 seconds rest period.

Gibala Regimen

This regimen is similar to Tabata, but in a longer period. Each exercise will be at a minimum 60 seconds followed by a 75 second rest. This form of training is a little bit more intense, hence the reason for a longer rest period. This form of workout is usually for the more advanced.

Example:

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    Burpees, 60 seconds

    Good to start off with your hardest exercise

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    rest, 75 seconds

    Prepare for next exercise

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    Bend over rows, 20 seconds

    Put emphasis on doing the correct technique

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    rest, 75 seconds

    Prepare for next exercise

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    Dive Bomber Push Ups, 20 seconds

    Alternate lunges when doing them

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    repeat

    Repeat exercise in a few more sets

Zuniga Regimen

In this regimen you would exercise for 30 seconds going at 90% max intensity for the whole exercise, and then resting 30 seconds.

The “10-20-30” Program

Really fun and entertaining, this form of workout has been proven to have a tremendously great affect on overall endurance. Studies have also shown that it reduces blood pressure and cholesterol. This method involves 30 seconds of low intensity, 20 seconds of medium intensity and 10 seconds of high intensity followed by 2 min of rest and repeated for 4 to 5 sets.

Who is HIIT for?

Although there may be some misconceoptions about HIIT generally being for athletes. It is simply not true. It can be used by everyone, average, athlete, moms, and even older individuals. Exercises can be challenging but they can also be easier.

Who is HIIT not for?

Even though almost everyone can do it, the only people who should stay away from this form of training are those that have pre-existing heart conditions. As always you are recommended to consult a doctor and if you should try a routine, then make sure to feel your body and listen to what it tells you. A workout is suppose to make your body feel like it’s working hard during a workout, but it isn’t suppose to hurt you badly. So remember to always feel out your body in any workout.

Next Step

Get fit with HIIT of course! Remember to always have fun and enjoy the amazing benefits of this form of exercise, You won’t regret it and you will always benefit.

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