What is HIIT?
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a type of exercise where you alternate intervals of maximum effort with brief rest or active recovery periods. It is a very effective type of exercise that alternates short bouts of intense exercise with periods of rest or low intensity, can give the same benefits as a regular workout while taking much less time. Increasingly, HIIT is becoming the most popular and top choice for those who are looking to get fit and improve their fitness in a time efficient manner.
What are the benefits of HIIT?
- FORCE YOUR BODY TO BURN FAT: HIIT forces your body to burn fat for fuel, instead of carbohydrates. In doing so, this increases your body’s overall fat burning abilities, making HIIT an effective choice for those looking to trim fat.
- INCREASED AEROBIC CAPACITY: HIIT workouts allow you to do much more in a shorter amount of time, so they allow you to accomplish the same amount of work in less than half the time as traditional exercise.
- INCREASED MUSCLE STRENGTH: HIIT requires you to use much more of your muscular and anaerobic energy reserves, meaning that with each repetition, you’re efficiently increasing your strength, power, and overall muscular endurance.
- DECREASED RISK OF INJURY: Since HIIT workouts are typically shorter in duration than traditional aerobic training, you have less of a chance to overwork your muscles, therefore decreasing the chance of muscle soreness and injury.
How to do a Home HIIT Workout
A home HIIT workout can be done anywhere you have room to move. All you need is space around you and some basic equipment to get started.
- One set of dumbbells (or a weight of your choice)
- Yoga Mat
- Interval Timer (phone apps are recommended)
Steps to Follow
- Set up your interval timer with 30 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest.
- Start with a 5 minute warm-up, then begin your workout.
- Complete your exercises for the full 30 seconds at maximum effort.
- Allow yourself to rest for 10 seconds between each exercise.
- Complete the full circuit for a total of 15 minutes (or desired time frame).
- Take a few minutes for cooling down afterwards.
Examples of Exercises
Here are some examples of exercises to include in your HIIT workouts:
- Mountain Climbers
- Jumping Jacks
- Bicycle Crunches
- Plank Holds
- Jump Rope
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q: How long should a HIIT workout be?
A: Generally HIIT sessions range from 10 to 30 minutes depending on your fitness level and goals. For beginners, start with a 10 minute HIIT workout and increase the time as you become more comfortable with the exercises.
- Q: Can I do HIIT without equipment?
A: Absolutely – you can do all of the exercises listed above without any equipment. You can also add in bodyweight exercises such as lunges and squats.
- Q: What can I do if I feel too tired to complete a full HIIT session?
A: If you feel too tired during a HIIT session, take some time to rest and hydrate before continuing. You can also reduce the intensity of the exercises or perform them at a slower pace.
How often should I be doing HIIT workouts to see results?It depends on your fitness level, but generally it is recommended that you do HIIT workouts two to three times a week. If you are a beginner, you may want to start with one HIIT session per week and gradually build up to two or three times a week. You should also take at least one rest day between each HIIT session to prevent overtraining and burnout.
Is there a particular order I should be doing these exercises in for best results?No. You can select any exercise you want and do it in any order. However, you may want to consider doing a few different kinds of exercises, such as strength training, cardio and flexibility, to ensure all your body parts are getting adequate exercise.
How many sets of repetitions should I do for each exercise?It depends on your strength, fitness goals, and your level of fitness. Generally, a good rule of thumb is to do 3 to 5 sets of 8-12 repetitions, depending on the type of exercise. This method will help to build muscle, increase endurance, and improve overall fitness.
Are there any particular diet and nutrition tips to keep in mind while doing a HIIT workout?Yes, there are some diet and nutrition tips to keep in mind while doing a HIIT workout.
1. Make sure to fuel your body with an adequate amount of protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats.
2. Start your HIIT workout with a healthy pre-workout snack. This can give you the extra energy you need to make it through your workout.
3. Make sure to drink plenty of water before, during and after your HIIT workout. This will help to keep you hydrated and reduce fatigue.
4. Try to use natural foods as the main source of nutrition for your HIIT workout. This can help you to get the nutrients your body needs to sustain a high-intensity workout.
5. Eat a post-workout meal or snack within 45 minutes after your HIIT workout to speed up recovery and muscle growth.
6. Avoid processed and sugary foods, as they may not provide the energy you need for a HIIT workout.