What is HIIT Training? And how can it benefit you?
HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training is about mixing high intensity bursts of exercise with moderate intensity recovery periods. It’s brutal but has incredible benefits. It’s the fastest way to get fit, lose fat and improve sports performance. It has been proven to burn 9 times as much fat than steady state cardiovascular training.
HIIT Sessions usually last less than 20 Minutes
This may seem like a very short space of time but believe me if you do the workout correctly you will be exhausted by the end of it. The goal of HIIT is to hold an anaerobic state for a long cumulative time. It’s designed with rest intervals to allow you to sprint harder for longer. Take this as an example, if you were to sprint for 100 meters, you would go full out for about 15 seconds (depending how fast you were). In an advanced HIIT workout you would probably spend about 7 to 8 minutes going full out in a 15 minute workout. If you are a beginner you should start with 4 to 6 minutes total workout time.
For Maximum Benefits make sure you are using Major Muscle Groups
There are a range of activities that you can do with HIIT. When choosing an activity try to pick one that safely uses the largest muscle groups in your body. High Intensity Interval Training will try and tap the energy sources found inside the muscle. The larger the muscle group being exercised, the more the benefit.
The absolute best for HIIT is sprinting. If, however, you have injuries or other problems which prevent you from sprinting by all means pick something else which you can manage safely. The second best would probably be a stationery spinning bike.
Do HIIT every Second Day
An HIIT workout should not be done on consecutive days. The workouts goal is to operate at a high intensity. So when you do your reps, you do them as hard as you can. This will allow you the most benefit. The workout burns energy from your muscle systems and it needs time to replenish it. If this doesn’t happen you will not be able to workout with as much intensity and you have much greater chance of injuring yourself. The benefits happen in your body during your rest period and the more rested you are, the more intensity you can put into your workout.
Obliterate your Fat when you combine Good Nutrition and HIIT
A lot of people, including yours truly, believed that if you wanted to maximise weight loss it was best to do HIIT on an empty stomach. Recent research is showing that this just isn't so and in fact the opposite is true. Make sure you have had something to eat about half an hour before you exercise, make sure it is something balanced and easily digestible, you do not want something heavy while you are exercising.
Alternate Your Interval Training Routines
One of the key principles around High Intensity Interval Training is preventing any type of plateau. It’s designed around pushing your body to constantly adapt, and your body will invariably adapt to this type of workout. When this happens your improvements slow down. To counter this, always keep your body guessing, after you have done about 8 weeks on a particular HIIT program, give yourself one week off then start a new one.
So what are you waiting on? Ask an O2 Fitness professional about HIIT today!