The Hype over HIIT


The Hype over HIIT

Lydia Kraus

 

So you’ve heard of HIIT, but what is it and why is it such a big deal? 

High Intensity Interval Training is a more intense and complex form of cardio that requires a fraction of the time typically needed for traditional cardio methods. HIIT is usually completed in 15-20 second intervals at 90-100% max exertion, with about 40 seconds recovery time in between each interval. Studies have shown that interval training is particularly effective for higher levels of fat loss and overall conditioning, and maintaining lean body mass, compared to steady state cardio methods. Because HIIT is taxing on one’s body, it requires longer post workout recovery times and should not be done on a daily basis. Without going into too much detail, HIIT utilizes carbohydrates as its number one fuel source, as oxygen levels cannot be maintained within the muscle during the short bursts of exertion.

Example HIIT workouts: Hill or treadmill sprints, stationary bike sprints, battle ropes, burpees, high knees, bodyweight circuits, kickboxing intervals, jumping rope, rowing…

Note: If you’re new to HIIT, start slow and gradually increase intensity. Always begin with a warm up and end with a cool down.