Life’s busy. And sometimes (even though we hate to admit it), that can get in the way of a good workout. However, if you can put the excuse demons at bay and have a good 20 minutes, you can get a decent sweat fest in, especially if you do high-intensity interval training.
High-intensity interval training, or HIIT, is a type of workout that consists of brief intervals of very strenuous exercise. Although the workout may be draining, it can be an effective and time-saving way to exercise. There are several ways to complete a HIIT workout depending on your body and your time schedule. You can 1) complete simply one sustained, balls-to-the-wall 4 or 5 minute bike ride or sprint (1 interval) and then are done; 2) do standard interval training, involving repeated brief bursts (usually less than 1 minute) of almost unbearably taxing exertion – no cheating – interspersed with gentler exercise for a few minutes to recover. You can do these sessions a few times a week, or every day if you so choose.
Some studies suggest that HIIT exercise can burn more calories in a short session, compared to a prolonged, steady workout. It can also improve stamina, increase strength and be an unintentional outlet for producing inventive curse words. Runners practice HIIT with fartleks where they vary their pace during a run, increasing speed for short bursts of time. It can also be done on a bike, elliptical, swimming, or even without any equipment: mountain climbers, jump squats, burpees.
Even if you can only get 5 minutes in, pick your poison – I’m a burpee girl – and go all out for one interval. It won’t be easy, but it will get your heart rate up, get your blood flowing and you’ll burn a few calories in the process.
Do you do HIIT workouts? Share what you do! (Visited 287 times, 6 visits today)