I’ve already mentioned before that I don’t like jogging. Maybe you can relate. I like sprint sessions or HIIT sessions.
Knowledge base: HIIT stands for high intense interval training. It’s a short (usually with 30 minutes as a maximum) training session with alternating intense anaerobic exercises (you body gets in an oxygen deficit) and less-intense recovery periods. The recovery periods are usually restricted in length so that the body can’t fully recover.
I personally like HIIT, because I can keep the sessions rather short, usually less than 10 minutes, but afterwards, I feel like having exercised for 1.5 hours. The only problem with this is that it requires a lot of motivation to get going because you know that every session will be extremely hard.
One major benefit is that you can do them everywhere. While you need a destined route to go jogging, you can simply pick four exercises you feel comfortable with and can create an HIIT session at home.
It’s usually 20 seconds for each exercise with 10 seconds recovery time, repeated for 8 times. A total of 4 minutes, and it’s basically all the cardio exercise you need to stay fit and gain endurance.
There is also a discussion if HIIT is actually better than ‘normal cardio’ especially for burning fat and research actually supports that.
One of the earliest studies, conducted in Canada, compared HIIT training for 15 weeks with steady state cardio for 20 weeks. At the end, the regular cardio group had burnt 15000 calories more during exercise, BUT the HIIT lost significantly more fat in total.
One of the most recent studies, done in Australia, compared that fat loss for women who either did a 20 minute HIIT session, with 8 seconds sprints and 12 seconds rest or did a 40-minute cardio program at 60% of their MHR (maximum heart rate).
The results were astonishing as the HIIT group lost six times more body fat than the cardio group. So if you want to lose fat, HIIT might be worth a try.
One of the reasons for this was found by several other studies. Although the calories that are burnt during the sessions might be identical, people who do HIIT session burn 10% more calories in the 24 hours after the exercise session.
Despite continuous endurance training being more popular HIIT often leads to better results in less time, so it might be a good addition to your regular cardio program.
In order for you to follow through with this, you should plan your sessions in advance. Studies show that people who set a definite time for something they want to do are much more likely on following through on their plans.
Once a week, set 10 minutes aside and to a simple and short HIIT session. You’ll reap more benefits than you can imagine.
Steps to take:
- Check your calendar and set aside 10 minutes
- Do an HIIT workout. At home or on a running track.
- Make sure to bring enough water and rest afterwards.