High-intensity interval training (HIIT) describes a workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and fixed periods of less intense activity or complete rest. HIIT workouts are simple but very effective and here’s why:
• It’s efficient– HIIT is the ideal workout for a busy schedule- whether you want to squeeze in a workout during your lunch break or get into shape for a fast-approaching event. According to American College of Sports Medicine, just 2 weeks of high-intensity intervals improves your aerobic capacity as much as 6 to 8 weeks of endurance training.
Using the Tabata training method you can complete an effective HIIT workout in just 4 Minutes!
• You can do it anywhere– Since it’s such a simple concept- go at maximum effort for a short period of time followed by a recovery period and repeat- you can adapt it to whatever time and space constraints you have.
• There is no equipment necessary- You don’t need any equipment to complete an effective HIIT workout. High knees, fast feet, anything plyometric like jumping lunges work just as well to get your heart rate up fast. In fact, some equipment like dumbbells can make HIIT less effective because you want the focus to be on pushing your heart to its max, not your biceps.
• You’ll burn more fat– Not only do you burn more calories during a HIIT workout, but the effect of all that intense exertion kicks your body’s repair cycle into hyperdrive. That means you burn more fat and calories in the 24 hours after a HIIT workout than you do after say a ‘steady pace run’.
• You lose weight not muscle– Whilst steady state cardio seems to encourage muscle loss, studies show that both weight training and HIIT workouts allow dieters to preserve their hard-earned muscles while ensuring most of the weight loss comes from your fat stores!
• You’ll increase your metabolism– HIIT stimulates production of your human growth hormone (HGH) by up to 450 percent during the 24 hours after you finish your workout. HGH is not only responsible for increased calorific burn but also slows down the aging process, making you younger both inside and out!