If you are a busy person who is always pressed for time or just someone excited to see fitness results in no time, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is perfect for you! As its name implies, this workout involves high intensity exercise in shorter bursts alternated with brief recovery periods. HIIT comes in different forms, but the general principle behind it is maintaining an activity at an exertion level of 7 or higher for a short period of time with certain intervals (on a scale of 1 to 10). It is a combination of 30 seconds or more of both hardcore exercise and recovery period repeated three or more times. On average, this workout lasts for 6-30 minutes every session.
Studies have shown that intensity is the key to fitness. Short intense interval training was proven to be more effective in inducing fat and weight loss than longer exercises according to several research studies. It works by promoting the production of fat-burning hormones and other hormones that suppress the appetite. With more intense workouts, fat and calories are burned more efficiently and faster. In fact, it burns twice or even three times as many calories than engaging in low intensity exercise. Doing HIIT also helps build and maintain lean muscles. And apart from its positive effects on body composition, HIIT may improve aerobic capacity, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and boost overall health.
You can do different kinds of HIIT even outside the gym or without any equipment. But if you are working out in a gym, it pays to create an exercise plan. Having a list of exercises and a concrete plan from start to finish will save you so much down time. This will also let you focus on the workout rather than constantly stopping and thinking of what your next exercise will be. Outside the gym, you can run, walk, bike, swim and do other activities at a higher intensity. For instance, when you run, you can increase the intensity by doing sprints and running on a hill or up and down stairs. You can run vigorously for 30 seconds then run at a slower pace for a minute and repeat this three or more times. The length of workout and repetitions will depend on your fitness level. As you get used to the workout, you can increase the intensity and repetitions, and shorten the recovery period.
So let’s HIIT it!
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