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High-intensity interval training for your next fitness goal

Written by True Topia

October 17, 2021

High-intensity interval training workouts are on the rage everywhere. It’s trendy, effective, and most importantly result-driven. These kinds of workouts got its popularity over the decade but now, ever since people started focusing on fitness more, HIIT workouts are breaking records!

So, what is HIIT? And is it even worth the hype, the claims, and every other result? We will debunk all of these in the upcoming sections. 

What is high-intensity training?

As the term suggests, high-intensity training emphasizes on training sessions that have high-intensity workouts with short intervals. These workouts are a form of interval training alternating short periods of anaerobic exercise accompanied by a less intense recovery period. 

The workout schedules primarily include cardio sessions, but HIIT isn’t limited to that. It can be customized as per the goals into short yet intensive weight-training sessions as well. These workouts ideally last for a 30minute session as the energy hits low after that. Each of these activities gets performed on average for a duration of 20seconds followed by a 10second recovery period. 

The HIIT sessions involve repetitive bursts of high-intensity workouts followed by low-intensity breaks. This particular pattern is extremely effective. It not only helps in muscle tone, fat burning, endurance, cardio fitness, and other aspects but also produces post-oxygen consumption or EPOC. It helps to ensure that you are burning fat even post-workout!

Types of HIIT workouts

There are primarily 4 types of HIIT workouts depending upon the goals you want to achieve and the muscles you want to target. Let’s delve briefly into each of these types-

Tabata HIIT: This form of HIIT workout session is one of the most popular and effective HIIT. Tabata sessions last for only 4minutes each session. But that might feel like the longest four minutes ever! 

The workouts consist of 8 rounds of training divided into 20seconds of high-intensity training followed by 10seconds of the recovery phase. Tabata sessions emphasize the glutes, core, and back muscles. Exercises, to begin with, Tabata can be Squats, lunges, crunches, and others. 

Full-body HIIT: Full-body HIIT workouts are ideal for anyone and everyone whose goal is to lose weight and get fit. Compared to any long session of cardio workouts, full-body HIIT training is much more effective and burns more fat even post workouts. These kinds of workout sessions are also ideal for toning your muscles. 

The full-body high-intensity interval training session focuses on all the muscle groups of the body ranging from glutes, shoulders, core, arms, and the overall body in itself. Some exercises to begin within this training would be push-ups, jumping jacks, side-kicks, mountain climbers, bear crawls, and others. 

Cardio HIIT: The workout sessions in the cardio HIIT focus and enhances your heart rates. The workouts are planned around exercises that can help to amplify your heart rate leading to burning more fat, improving bone density, enhancing your endurance and cardiovascular system. Always make a note to get yourself checked in case you have some issues with the health of your heart. 

The muscles cardio HIIT sessions focusses mainly on the core, back, glutes, quadriceps, and others. There is no specific exercise other than the fact that you need to ensure that your heart rates are at its maximum level. 

Weight training HIIT: Adding weight to your HIIT sessions can take your training sessions to the next level. It will ensure vigorous training for your muscles, enhancing your muscle strength, bone density, and overall heart rate. Ideally, if you are starting out with your HIIT training, it is better to avoid weights. Once you ace the exercises, you can take them to the next level with weights. 

Weight training HIIT sessions focus on shoulders, triceps, hip muscles, and other muscle groups. You can begin your sessions with workouts like squats, shoulder press, hip dips, and others. 

Benefits of high-intensity training

Yes, HIIT is high-intensity training based on short sprints of interval. But how is it helpful? What are the benefits and results-driven from HIIT? We will look into 5 benefits of high-intensity interval training-

  • Helps to burn more calories: The design of HIIT training includes high-intensity workouts. Hence, these workouts sessions burn more calories than any other training program in a short span. HIIT can help to burn calories even after the workout session with EPOC.
  • Enhances metabolic rates: The workout sessions are planned so that your metabolic rates are high even after the workout session. This ensures that you are actively burning more fat, and the excess doesn’t get stored in your body.
  • Tone your muscles: High-intensity workout sessions can help to tone your muscles and enhance your muscle strength. The workouts help to increase your muscle strength and deplete any excess fat in the muscles.
  • Enhances overall oxygen consumption: HIIT workouts enhance the overall oxygen consumption of your body. It helps in building your endurance and ensures that the maximum amount of oxygen gets utilized by the body. This occurs generally with long sessions of cycling or other cardio activities but with HIIT, you can reap the benefits in much lesser time. 
  • Reduces chronic illness: These training sessions ensure that the chronic diseases with being overweight get decreased. HIIT can help to reduce your blood pressure and maintain your blood sugar level. Along with this it also helps to keep your heart rate in check. 

High-intensity interval training for beginners

If you want to get started with high-intensity interval training sessions from the comfort of your home, there are a lot of HIIT training videos available. It can help to ensure that you can continue your HIIT workouts from home. 

However, ensure that you have gone through a proper check-up before diving into any of these sessions. We all want to achieve our targets as soon as possible. But HIIT is no shortcut to any of your fitness goals. Hence, ensure that you don’t overstrain yourself. 

Have proper guidance before you start out. It can either be from a personal trainer or online fitness apps that include specific workout plans for beginners. You can check out our article on Fitness aps to have a better understanding of which one can be the perfect fit for you. 

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