Doing high-intensity interval training or HIIT for short can not only help you to shed those unwanted pounds but it will also send your body into fat-burning overdrive! If done correctly you are able to burn a lot of calories in a very short period of time. Therefore check that excuse of not enough time to exercise at the door.
The concept behind HIIT is not allowing your body to adjust to one intensity level. You achieve this by training at different intervals of differing speeds. Hence completely exhausting yourself during one interval and recovering in the following interval.
HIIT is more commonly known as Interval Training and is not limited to just running. In fact just about any exercise can be used for HIIT. The most common exercise is sprinting but you can also use jump-rope, stationary bike, elliptical, rowing machine and treadmill. Your main focus should be to push as hard as possible in the high intensity interval to raise your heart rate and then lower it during the low intensity interval.
A key fact to remember is that sprinting as fast as possible on a treadmill can be risky and require a lot of concentration and focus. Therefore a less risky option is to raise the incline and jog at an incline still achieving that high intensity heart rate without the added risk.
HIIT HAS EVERYTHING YOU NEED
What makes this training so effective is that it uses the body’s reserves of energy both during and after a workout. Furthermore your metabolism stays elevated and continues to burn calories for hours after the workout. This is due to what is called the excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) effect. Similarly With HIIT, not only will you burn a lot of calories during the workout but you will continue to burn calories long afterwards. The reason for this is your body replaces energy and repairs muscle proteins damaged during exercise.
A google search will produce many studies that have been conducted comparing both steady state cardio and HIIT training. Comparing HIIT to Steady State Cardio yielded some surprising results. Many of the participants lost 8-10x more body fat doing High Intensity Interval Training. If you are trying to lose weight and fat then this is must for your training schedule. Start by adding it in one or two days a week ideally on days that you do not lift.
The other main benefit of HIIT is that many long endurance exercises like running can cause muscle catabolism. This leads to muscle tissue being broken down and used for energy. When trying to lose weight this is the last thing we want as it results in a slower metabolism. However, HIIT on the other hand not only helps preserve muscle but can also result in building muscle.
I personally use HIIT twice a week to help remove that stubborn fat from my stomach area. I have also seen the greatest amount of fat loss and change in people who add HIIT to their workout rotation.
HIIT DONE RIGHT
Always make sure to begin you HIIT session with a good long warm up and stretching session. This primes your body for the workout to come and reduces your chance of injury.
Finally be sure to consume an adequate amount of water while you are performing the session. Because of the high amount of calories burnt in such a short time you may find that your body begins to cramp.