Why HIIT Workouts Are Perfect For Your Busy Schedule
“Back to School” season is here, but that term means different things to different people. Some of us are heading back to class, some of us are sending our kids off to school, and some of us are getting much busier at work. No matter what sorts of changes happening in the fall, it’s clear that we are all running low on time. It’s all too easy to let stressful schedules throw us off track. While finding time for fitness can seem impossible, it’s important to make exercise a priority. One of my favorite ways to sneak in a quick and efficient workout is to incorporate HIIT into my routine.
What is HIIT?
HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, is a type of training in which you alternate between periods of maximum effort and periods of recovery. The intense intervals should feel very hard and you should not be able to carry on a conversation. The recovery periods should be comfortable in order to prepare you for your next high-intensity burst. Traditional cardio like running, swimming, and cycling will work in the HIIT format, but bodyweight exercises like burpees and squats are also extremely popular. As far as the work to rest ratio goes, a good place to start is 2:1. For example, a typical tabata-style HIIT workout includes 20 seconds of maximum effort followed by 10 seconds of rest for a total of 8 rounds.
When completed correctly, this training technique can offer greater benefits in less time. HIIT workouts . . .
- are convenient, because you just need a few minutes and a bit of space. These workouts can be completed almost anywhere at any time.
- are efficient. By working at your max effort, you are able to burn more calories in shorter periods of time.
- can help you continue to burn calories after the workout ends thanks to excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), otherwise known as the after-burn effect.
- can increase endurance. These workouts have been shown to improve endurance by increasing athletes’ VO2 max.
- can improve your cardiovascular health. Regular cardio, including HIIT, is important for a strong and healthy heart.
If you’re ready to improve your cardiovascular fitness, increase your overall fat burn, and boost your metabolism in a record amount of time, give HIIT a try!