One of the quickest ways to get in fit, lose fat and supercharge for sports performance is High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). It’s also ideal for people with tight schedules and not much time to exercise.
What is HIIT?
HIIT involves mixing high intensity bursts of exercise with moderate intensity recovery periods. HIIT is all about speed—intense speed during exercise. It’s brutal but has incredible advantages and results. A HIIT workout will lose up to 9 times more fat than a similar cardio workout. It’s a technique mainly used for individuals trying to lose weight but the rate at which it can make you fitter makes it beneficial for all types of exercise.
How Does HIIT Work?
The workouts usually last 20 minutes, more or less depending on your level of fitness. The 30-second workout is the ideal place to start with HIIT. The idea is to do 30 seconds of intense cardio followed by a rest period of a set amount of time. Beginners rest for 90 seconds. If you are more fit, you can rest for 60 or 30 seconds.
Start with six intervals of intense cardio alternating with rest, and gradually work up to 12 intervals. As you become more fit, rest periods will decrease from 90 seconds to 60 and then 30 seconds.
Any type of cardio can be utilized – running, biking, stair climbing – the key is obtaining high intensity. By the end of the 30-second speed period, you must feel out of breath and unable to go any longer. You should be begging for that rest!
Do this workout ideally three to four times per week to complement your strength training. If your time is tight, twice a week is better than not at all—consistency is key. Remember to always warm up and cool down properly, along with a stretch.
Suzy Kaitman aims to make fitness fun for her clients. Always encouraging and using positive reinforcement, Suzy is the opposite of a Jillian Michaels-type drill sergeant. If you’d like an upbeat personal trainer to help you enjoy your workouts, Suzy is the one for you.