High Intensity Workouts

HIIT High Intensity Interval TrainingHIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is cardio performed at such an intense level that your body will spend the rest of the day expending energy to recover from the ass-kicking you gave it. This is commonly referred to as EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption) and it means that you consume a great deal more oxygen recovering from the exercise bout than you would have if you’d just done a steady-state workout.

This means that you will be burning up to nine times more fat while sitting on the couch later that night than you would have if you’d spent an hour on the treadmill at a moderate pace.

Obviously, I am talking about intense training. You will need to push yourself out of that comfort zone you have gotten used to and really challenge yourself. If you are willing to do this, however, I can guarantee that you will spend less than half the time you usually do on those machines and get much leaner in the process.

Working HIIT Into Your Training

These types of workouts are very intense and should only be done 2 to 3 times a week.

When doing this type of training along with weights, be sure to take in a post-workout drink (or quickly absorbed meal) to help replenish lost glycogen and repair the muscle tissues.

The HIIT Procedure

A HIIT session consists of a warm up period of exercise, followed by six to ten repetitions of high intensity exercise, separated by medium intensity exercise, and ending with a period of cool down exercise. The high intensity exercise should be done at near maximum intensity. The medium exercise should be about 50% intensity. The number of repetitions and length of each depends on the exercise. The goal is to do at least six cycles, and to have the entire HIIT session last at least fifteen minutes and not more than twenty.

Tabata Method

The original Tabata Protocol requires the following:

5 minutes of warm-up
8 intervals of 20 seconds all-out intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest
2 minutes cool-down

Little Method

3 – 5 minutes cool down
60 seconds of intense exercise followed by 75 seconds rest, repeated 8-12 times.
3 – 5 minutes cool down

Standard HIIT Interval Work Out

The following is a typical interval workout. You alternate the same period of low intensity with the same period of higher intensity.

3 – 5 minutes warm up
1 minute moderate or high intensity followed by 1 minute low intensity (repeat 6 – 8 times)
3 – 5 minutes cool down

You can perform HIIT (high intensity interval training) on any type of cardio equipment such as the elliptical machine, the treadmill, bike or rowing machine. You can even use skipping ropes or sprints! I prefer the bike, as I don’t have to worry about falling over!

How have you incorporated HIIT into your workout routine? What is your favourite method? Please share with us what you do in the comments below!

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