Here’s Why HIIT Is Popping Up At Your Gym

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New workouts and weight loss trends are a dime a dozen, but this year, one fairly new fitness style had staying power. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) came to workouts in the form of 305 Fitness, Orange Theory, KORE, and more. No matter the packaging, the main tenant of HIIT is the same: It’s a cardio workout measured in short bursts of intense training. Sip on your favorite Daily Shake as we learn more about this upgraded form of exercise.

WHY HIIT WORKS

We already know that working out benefits us in numerous waysStudies have proven that HIIT is one of the most effective workout programs for weight loss. A three-times a week workout regimen has been shown to reduce total body mass and total fat mass. Even better, HIIT has an “afterburn” effect, so you’ll continue to burn calories after you’re done working out. That sweat session also has an improvement on your metabolism, leaving you burning more calories after your workout than if you hadn’t hit the gym.

But it’s not as simple as signing up for a HIIT class and waiting for the pounds to fall off. HIIT is tough — the word intensity is right in the name for a reason. Sets are anywhere from 10 seconds to one minute of exertion, followed by active rest like jumping jacks, holding a plank, or shadow boxing jab-crosses. Often, cardio activities are combined with added strength training tools like kettlebells or medicine balls, so you’re building muscle, getting up your heart rate, and working on endurance. You should feel like you’re doing an intense workout.

HOW TO HIIT

HIIT is one of the easiest workouts to recreate at home, even without a trainer yelling out instructions. You’ve probably already encountered HIIT-style moves in the past, like burpees, mountain climbers, and push-ups. If you’re working out at home, experts suggest starting out with a work to rest ratio of 1:2. Eventually, you’ll work your way up to HIITing for as long as you’re in active recovery.

If you’re just getting started, here are a few simple moves to work into your routine:

1. High Knees

Warm up with 30 seconds of running in place by drawing your knees to hip height. Keep your core tight.

Rest for 15 seconds or do jumping jacks, depending on your fitness level.

2. Jump Squats

Stand with your feet hip’s distance (the length of two fists) apart. Squat by bending your knees and sitting down with your back straight and chest forward. Jump up and land in a squat. Repeat for 30 seconds.

Rest or jumping jacks for 15 seconds.

3. Mountain Climbers

Start in plank position, with your hands directly underneath your shoulders and your feet hips’ distance apart. Draw your knees into your chest one knee at a time, keeping your core tight.

Rest or jumping jacks for 15 seconds.

4. Cross-Body Plank

Continue in plank position. Draw your right knee into your left elbow. Replace it behind you, and draw your left knee into your right elbow. Repeat as if you’re running in place, making sure to feel the twist in your side muscles.

Rest or jumping jacks for 15 seconds.

Don’t forget to fully stretch out and get a good foam-rolling session in after a workout like this. We like to combine high intensity training with other forms of exercise, like walking and more restorative yoga, for a well-rounded routine that will keep us fit and healthy for a long time.

 

Written by Leah Prinzivalli

 

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