First lets touch on what HIIT is and what it is not. HIIT IS a type of training that allows us to work at higher intensities (85-90%) heart rate max (220-age) for short amounts of time (30-40 seconds) with short periods of rest in between. We should not be able to, or even want to carry on conversation during our "work" interval. We should need every second of recovery during our "rest"interval. If your not sweating and breathing heavily during this training you are not pushing yourself hard enough. HIIT IS NOT training in which we pace ourselves through the 30 or 40 seconds of "work" and check our iPhones and socialize during our "rest" periods. This is "all out, lets get this thing done in the shortest amount of time and go home" type training!!
3 Reasons Why High Intensity Interval training (HIIT) should be included in your current fitness program!
1. HIIT allows us to burn more fat while preserving precious lean muscle mass as compared to more traditional types of endurance cardio. We must push
ourselves into an anaerobic zone in order to reap these benefits. It is impossible to maintain these high intensity levels for more than 30-40 seconds so in turn, we must allow our heart rate to recover just long enough to enable us to push ourselves into this high intensity zone again!
The mistake most people make is that they use long duration cardio as their #1 means to lose fat. Long duration cardio has a very poor track record when it comes to effective fat loss. Yes, you might burn calories, and for a time you might lose weight, but the weight you are losing is most likely muscle mass and not necessarily fat. This is not only detrimental to the overall shape of your body, but it will also negatively impact the way your body performs as you age. Studies have shown that endurance type cardio may actually sabotage efforts to burn fat because the body responds to long periods of heightened stress, i.e. long bouts of endurance cardio, by releasing the hormone cortisol, which promotes fat storage!
2. HIIT saves time! You can get an all around body blasting, butt kicking, endorphin releasing HIIT session done in 15 minutes! You just bought yourself an extra 45 minutes to do something you really love!
3. HIIT is fun! With HIIT there is always recovery right around the corner. You can really push yourself and explore your limits without the overwhelming feeling that you have to keep going with no end in sight!
Interested in HIIT training? Try out our Metabolic class! This class is built of different HIIT circuits!