You’ve probably heard about HIIT from your friends or someone you know and have wondered what it is and maybe even try it. Well, to give you a background, let me tell you what HIIT is.
HIIT, also known as High-intensity interval training, is a form of interval training that consists of cardiovascular exercises, alternating short periods of intense anaerobic exercise with less intense recovery periods.
For those of you who are always on-the-go and love challenges and are looking for an efficient way to lose weight, I suggest you try a HIIT workout. A HIIT workout is ideal for your busy schedule, whether you want to fit in a workout during your lunch break or you want to quickly get in shape for a certain event.
Why Should You Try HIIT?
For one thing, HIIT is very time-efficient. “It takes you less time to complete a HIIT workout than other moderate-intensity aerobic exercises. At the same time, HIIT offers the same health benefits,” said Ben Breda, the founder of BestHealthGear.com.
Also, you don’t just burn more calories during a HIIT workout, it also makes your body’s repair cycle go into overdrive and helps you build a healthier heart.
Lastly, if you’ve ever been on a diet, then chances are you already know how hard it is not to lose muscle mass along with your body fat. Well, I have good news for you. HIIT workouts allow you to preserve your hard-earned muscles and, at the same time, ensuring that most of the weight you lose comes from fat stores.
How Often Should You Do a HIIT Workout?
For beginners, I would suggest doing one to two workouts each week, resting for two to three days in between.
In order to keep your body in excellent condition, you should balance your interval training with lower intensity exercises like swimming and yoga.
HIIT Suggestions and Advice
Prepare a timer beforehand – It is better to make use of a timer in most exercises so that you will know when to move onto the next exercise.
Don’t forget to hydrate – You will most definitely be sweating a lot, and so it is a good idea to have a bottle of water readily available. Stay hydrated.
Play some music – For the times when you’re feeling tired and having difficulties, you can listen to your favorite song to cheer you on.
Always have healthy snacks nearby – HIIT workouts can make you feel extremely hungry. So, plan ahead and have healthy snacks on hand so that you can avoid eating junk foods and sweets.
First, always, and I mean always, warm up before doing any exercise. Now, this is always being stressed because you might pull a muscle or a tendon when you suddenly do any strenuous exercise without prepping your body.
As beginners, it is recommended that you limit these workouts to 1-2 times a week at first. As you grow more comfortable executing the exercises, you can do them 2-3 times a week. Please remember that when you overdo it, you risk soft tissue injuries to your joints.
With regard to form, always make sure that you maintain the proper form. This is, of course, to ensure optimum results and to avoid any risk of injury to your body.
Beginner HIIT Workout
To start our beginner HIIT workout, let’s have a two-minute warm-up to prep your muscle.
First, jog or march in place for about 30 seconds. Then, while still standing, rotate your arms backward, one after the other. Think of it like you’re doing a backstroke. Do this for 30 seconds. Finally, execute a front lunge, side lunge, and back lunge stepping always with the left leg for 30 seconds. Then, shift to the other leg and repeat the steps. Continue for another minute. After that, you’re ready to start.
Since you’re still a beginner, let’s just do a 10-minute HIIT workout for now. This workout consists of a jab, cross, front, jumping jacks, and sumo squats. You will execute a total of four rounds for each exercise that will last for about 25 seconds each round and then rest for 10 seconds in between rounds.
To perform the jab, cross, front, stand with your left foot in front of your right while ensuring that your hips are facing to your right side. Next, bring your arms up into a boxing position and punch forward with your left arm. Then, throw a cross punch with your right arm and let your body rotate as your right arm crosses over your body to the left. By now, your body weight should be over your left foot, with your back heel slightly hanging over the floor. Now, bring both of your arms back into your body while shifting your weight back into your starting position and facing front. After that, repeat on the right side.
To execute the jumping jacks, start by standing upright with your feet about hip-width apart while your arms are at your sides. Then, quickly jump your feet out while raising your arms. Repeat this step as fast as possible for 25 seconds. If you’re having difficulties executing the jumping jack, you can try an alternative of stepping side to side while raising your arms instead.
In executing a sumo squat, position your feet a little more than about a hip-wide and point your toes out at an angle of 45 degrees. Then, while still keeping your weight in your heels, lower yourself until your thighs are parallel to the floor, all the while ensuring that your back is flat and your chest is upright. Employ your glutes and quads and push back to your starting position. Continue for 25 minutes.
After executing four rounds for each exercise, cool your body down by doing an overhead stretch, a reverse lunge, and a forward fold.
Certainly, this is a challenging yet rewarding workout. This is not a workout you can do while reading a book or surfing the Internet on your mobile phone. And since it’s relatively short, you will definitely be working hard all throughout the workout, but it will offer you a new challenge and a quick way to see results. And whilst it is effective, you still need to approach it sensibly in order to avoid overdoing it and getting injured.