Jog on the spot as fast as you can for one minute! Rest for two. Now jog again for one minute. Your lungs are screaming. Your muscles sore. But you’ve got this! And relax for two. Repeat.
HIIT is the ultimate cardio workout taking the fitness world by storm. The demanding interval training sees fitness enthusiasts perform quick exercise sets working at their maximum capacity. This is alternated by slightly longer recovery periods.
Challenging, though it may be, the level of intensity is matched by the benefits reaped from the workout.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, just 2 weeks of high-intensity intervals improves your aerobic capacity as much as 6 to 8 weeks of endurance training. HIIT may be hard, but you get out what you put in. Intense training leads to intense results, including:
Torching calories – Research has found that HIIT burns 25-30% more calories during 30 minutes of exercise than weight training, running and biking. Besides which, you spend most of your time in recovery anyway. All that rest time and you still burn calories – win-win!
- Slimming your waistline – HIIT can speed up your metabolism for up to 48 hours after a workout, so you’ll burn fat long after you’ve finished. It’s particularly fantastic for getting all that unhealthy visceral fat out of your system.
- It’s great for heart health – HIIT hits out hard at blood pressure. Whilst the pressure exerted on your blood vessels may not feel like fun at the time, you’re actually boosting the elasticity and flexibility of your veins and arteries. It does a better job than continuous aerobic exercise.
- It fits into our busy schedule – Unlike endurance workouts like running on the treadmill, HIIT slots nicely into our day. You can spend as much time on it as you like and you’ll never walk away feeling like you could have done more.
- It improves oxygen consumption – Your VO2 max is a metric of how much oxygen your body uses in a set time. It’s a measure of fitness levels if you will. As you can imagine, HIIT is a sure fire way to quickly climb the VO2 scale and come out on top of your fitness game.
Come on down to your nearest Halo centre and get your heart pumping with our ultimate HIIT body-shaping workouts. Want a piece of the action? Descriptions of the full range of group exercise classes (low and high impact) can be found here.