HIIT or hi-intensity interval training (HIIT) is one of the most effective calorie-torching workouts out there. In a nutshell, HIIT will have you working hard for a short period of time, resting for a slightly longer period, then repeating the process. This workout is all about quality, not quantity and the short length intervals allow you to push yourself even harder.
Here, let me highlight why HIIT works, from its minimum time, maximum effort discipline, to its power to offer an efficient full body workout:
1. Minimum time needed…
With hi-intensity interval training, finding time to exercise becomes a whole lot easier. The key to this form of exercise is that you work at your maximum capacity, but only for a short period of time. A HIIT workout usually lasts no more than 20 minutes long, so it can easily be squeezed into your day, be it morning, evening or even working out in your lunch break.
2. …maximum effort required
Just because this form of exercise is quick doesn’t meant that it’s easy. During those short bursts of activity, you should be working at your absolute maximum, pushing yourself faster and further before resting. HIIT demands that you challenge your fitness and performance every time you put on your trainers. Never again will you finish a workout questioning if you could have given more.
3. No equipment needed
Not only is HIIT easy to find time for, it’s also easy to perform wherever you are. Sprinting and skipping are both forms of exercise that can be adapted for hi-intensity interval training which can be done pretty much anywhere.
Turn your living room into your personal workout space and take advantage of the variety of health and fitness apps available to time your splits, plan workouts and track your progress.
4. Stronger heart
This form of exercise is incredibly effective in improving your cardiovascular health. As your heart rate shifts, you switch between work and rest. This strengthens your arteries, protecting your body against cardiovascular diseases and improving your longevity through daily exercise.
5. Reach weight loss goals
While steady-state cardio does have its benefits, HIIT is a great choice if you’re looking for long-term weight loss. From sprinting through the park to a spinning class, studies suggest this form of exercise burns around 13 calories a minute – that’s 3 more than running at a steady pace. Hi-intensity activity also regulates blood sugar levels, helping you to curb cravings and make healthier food choices.
6. Increased endurance
HIIT provides a quicker and arguably more entertaining way of improving your endurance than long sessions at a steady pace. Adding a 30-second sprint in the middle of your mile or ending on a sprint finish will provide a new fitness challenge, improve your performance and your health. Use your progress as your motivation, finding the energy to add another 10 seconds or another repetition.
7. Lean strong muscles
Hi-intensity interval training is a great opportunity to step away from the lure of the treadmill to a full body workout. If it involves alternating intense work and rest, you can add almost any form of exercise or equipment into your session. Incorporating lunges or burpees into your routine will involve multiple muscle groups for a satisfying fitness fix.
Don’t abandon your weekend jog or weight training just yet – a mixture of workouts is a great way to keep your body guessing and keep you from hitting a plateau. Swap in a couple of hi-intensity interval sessions and reap some incredible rewards.
About Samantha Lippiatt
Samantha is an entrepreneur, healthy lifestyle advocate and co-founder of Australia’s first specialty wellness travel company Health and Fitness Travel. Samantha has an unbridled enthusiasm for all things travel, health and fitness and is committed to providing healthy holidays options that not only enhance but change lives. Samantha’s goal is to bring wellness tourism into mainstream acceptance in Australia and showcase that taking care of yourself can be both a very enjoyable and rewarding experience.