High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a form of cardio created to burn more fat and boost metabolic rates higher in a short period of time.
Usually the HIIT workout sessions vary from anywhere between 9-20 minutes. The original protocol set a 2:1 ratio from work to recovery periods. For example, 20 seconds intense exercise followed by 10-second rest period and repeating the cycle.
One of the most common HIIT strategies is called the TABATA method. Tabata training was discovered by Dr. Izumi Tabata and a team of researchers from the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo.
Dr. Tabata discovered that this type of interval training produces higher quality results than aerobic training (traditional long duration steady state cardio). One result was building as much muscular endurance as forty-five minutes of normal cardio training. In the study the subjects increased their anaerobic capacity by over a quarter as well a substantial increase in their aerobic fitness. For accurate results VO2 levels were measured of athletes that performed the training method.
A Tabata program, just like any other form of HIIT can be versatile and custom made for a specific individual after taking under consideration the experience of the individual/athlete.
Interestingly, major members of the Japanese Speed Skating team had used the high-intensity protocol for several years. Also some studies, such as one by Laval University, state that HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) cardio helps subjects’ lose/burn nine times more fat than those who trained the traditional way. Since the metabolic rate gets boosted higher, the amount of calories burned though the day after your workout is also much higher.
To simplify the above if you want to burn more fat and not muscle in a short period of time plus increase your metabolic rate for the rest of the day, choose HIIT training.
HIIT Sessions should consist of a warm up and stretching period followed by the 9-20 minute HIIT and a cool down and stretching period. You can be really creative with your HIIT workouts since running is only ONE of the options to perform HIIT. I suggest, jump rope, heavy duty rope, parachute sprints, cone sprints, box jumps.
Also keep in mind that you can vary the duration of your HIIT session. I usually suggest a 12-15 minute HIIT. If you had a killer leg day the day before or 2 days before your HIIT and the lower body muscles are still sore, try the rope cardio (picture above) example of a 2 to 1 ratio HIIT (40 secs fast 20 seconds slow) repeated 5 times followed by 2.5 minute recovery period which totals up to 7.5 minutes, then repeat the cycle one more time.
An ideal HIIT workout:
3-5 minute warm up period
5 * (40 sec very fast run (nearly sprinting) followed by a 20 sec slow walk)
2.5 minute moderate speed walk for recovery
REPEAT THE CYCLE ONE MORE TIME
3-5 minute cool off for recovery! (VERY IMPORTANT)
The above HIIT workout consisted of running for the intense part of the program however do not forget that you can integrate the following exercises below instead of running or even alternate every intense part with a different exercise from below.
- Heavy Duty Rope
- Jump Rope
- Agility Ladder
- Box Jumps
- Push ups
- Cone drills (such as suicides)
I hope HIIT works well for you, especially when you are trying to get CUT while staying JACKED! BURN FAT AND PRESERVE MUSCLE with HIIT TRAINING.
Please keep in mind that HIIT training is an intense training method for the advanced athletes however it can be modified to meet your needs and specific goals.
References: Journal of Sports Medicine, interval training
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Written by Melih F. Cologlu Editor in Chief/Team Grenade Athlete Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Melih-F-Cologlu