You’ve probably gathered by now that we’re a massive pair of foodies, but we also love training and something we’re huge fans of and include in our own workouts and programs is HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). You’ve likely heard of it by now but in case you haven’t it involves switching between short bursts of high intensity exercise and periods of rest at a lower intensity. For example, sprinting full pace for 20 seconds followed by walking for 40 seconds and repeating say 8-12 times, that is interval training. HIIT is a great fat loss tool that gets fantastic results, in case you need a little more convincing here are my 4 reasons to get involved in HIIT today.
1) It takes less than 20 minutes
A good HIIT session can be nailed in no time. In fact the shorter it is the more effective it’s likely to be. I’ve seen HIIT classes advertised at 45 mins-1 hour in length yet my interval sessions last between 10 and 20 minutes and that’s really all you need. As much as I love training I too am incredibly time poor at times with heavy work load and lots of travelling so HIIT is the perfect solution.
2) The after burn effect
Don’t let this put you off, I’m not suggesting you will be struck by another surge of lactic acid once you climb off the bike. What I’m referring to here is the fact that you will ramp up your metabolism during your HIIT session and continue to burn more calories at rest for up to 24 hours after the session has finished. Not bad for 20 minutes work right?
3) You don’t need any equipment
Not only do you burn a ton of calories in a short space of time but you also don’t need any equipment whatsoever to get a solid HIIT session done. My favourite bodyweight choices are sprints, hill sprints, stair sprints, jump squats, plyometric lunges, burpees and mountain climbers.
4) Its muscle sparing
If you have a fat loss goal you need to address calorie intake (you maybe consuming too little or too many) and be cautious of combining this with large amounts of low intensity, steady state cardio as this can eat into that lean muscle of yours. Less lean muscle will equate to a slower metabolism which means fewer calories burned during exercise and at rest. The good news is that HIIT has been shown to be the most muscle sparing form of cardio. So you can hold onto hard earned muscle and burn fat in the process, all whilst spending less time in the gym. WINNING!
Have I convinced you to get involved? I hope so! You are no doubt keen to get started so here are 4 of my favourite HIIT workouts to kick things off. Be sure to warm up thoroughly first before trying these out and remember its about YOUR maximal effort, not what someone else is doing so stick within your limits as that’s all that matters.
Duration: 20 minutes
You can do these on the treadmill, outdoors in the park, up some stairs or up a hill. Sprint as fast as you can for 30 seconds, rest by walking slowly for 90 seconds and repeat for 10 sets.
B: On ya bike
Duration: 10-15 minutes
Select a level on the bike that allows you to keep your speed just above 120 rpm, if you can’t reach 120 rpm its too high and if you are way over 120 rpm you need to increase the resistance level. Sprint as fast as you can for 20 seconds, recover by pedaling slowly for 40 seconds and repeat for 10-15 sets.
C) Row row row ya boat
Duration: 15 minutes
Set the rower up for distance intervals and select 200m (be sure to ask someone if you don’t know how). Set the rest period to 1 minute. Row 200m as explosively as possible aiming to get your average 500 split time as low as possible, rest 60 seconds and repeat for 10 sets.
D) Burpess and kettlebell swings
Duration: 20 minutes
Grab a kettlebell you know you can swing for 20 reps. Perform as many burpees as you can in 25 seconds, rest 10 seconds, now do as many kettlebell swings as you can in 25 seconds, rest 60 seconds and repeat for 10 sets.
So there you have it, reasons to do HIIT and 4 options to get you started. So what are you waiting for? GET INVOLVED!
If you love these types of workouts you will love the training plans in our Fitter 365 membership site. Whether you’re a gym goer, train at home or in the park, a fan of kettlebells or are looking to get stronger or add muscle we have training plans that cover all of this for all ability levels.
Check it out here. It’s only £1 for month one and you can cancel whenever you want with no hassle.
Matt “Get The Job Done” Whitmore