HIIT – or high-intensity interval training is an exercise trend that has grown in popularity over the last eight years as you can see from the Google trend data below. Although HIIT is a form of interval training – training you may only associate with the ‘bleep’ test from your school PE days – try not to let that put you off!
Source: Google Trends
Interval training can be a great form of exercise for many reasons. Two of the main reasons people are drawn to this cardiovascular workout is that it can be done anywhere – at home, the gym, in your hotel room – and it’s over relatively quickly.
If those two reasons sound enticing, read on to find out in detail what HIIT training comprises of, it’s benefits and some workouts for you to try.
HIIT training has long been a method of exercise – popular with military personnel to gym bunnies. Interval training gives your full body an intensive workout with short recovery times in between.
You can build up your fitness over time, but it’s possible to notice results pretty quickly. Many fitness programmes, including BodyBoss, promise you will start to see physical changes to your body in just two weeks. So if you’re trying to get fitter and want results quickly, HIIT training could be the perfect workout routine for you.
To get started with HIIT, you only need four pieces of equipment:
Before you start your workout, you must take care of your feet. If you’re prone to developing blisters on your feet, prevention is better than cure! Our blister prevention pads sit inside your shoe and not on your foot.
Don’t let blisters stop you in your tracks and interfere with your new workout routine. Buy PelliTec blister prevention pads before you start.
Aside from feeling fitter in a short space of time, interval training offers many other benefits.
With workout sessions usually lasting between 20-30 minutes, it’s clear to see why this workout regime is accessible – you can easily fit in workouts when you get a spare minute in the evening or on your lunch break. Its versatile nature means you can exercise anywhere – even on holiday (if the mood takes you).
This is different from other exercises like running – online diet and healthy living experts, Sparkpeople suggest running for 30 minutes can burn around 324 calories. Still, a 30-minute HIIT workout class can burn up to 500 calories, according to Virgin Active. And your body keeps burning calories as it repairs muscles from your workout, this is called the afterburn effect. This effect is present after partaking in any cardiovascular exercise, but the results can be longer-lasting after intense interval training.
The great thing about interval training is that anyone of any age and size can take part in the workout. You can take it as slow as you want and gradually build up your interval training exercises. You are recommended to speak with a medical professional before starting a new activity if you’re unsure whether it is suitable for you.
When you’re just starting, it’s a good idea to ease yourself into it, so if you’re ready to get the ball rolling, we found a HIIT workout for you to jump straight into. We love this 30-minute class by Sydney Cummings, it’s easy to understand and fun – you’ll need dumbbells for this one!