The benefits of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) are real. If you are unfamiliar with HIIT, this is a form of exercise where you complete short periods of maximum energy work, followed by a short rest period, and then go after it again for several more rounds. This simple strategy makes the body work so much harder than it does during steady state cardio. Additionally, unlike steady state cardio, HIIT leaves your body with an insane “after burn effect,” which simply means you are burning calories long after you finish exercising. A general rule of thumb is that the more intense the exercise is, the greater the afterburn effect will be. A lot of people use heart rate monitors to gauge where they need/want their heart rates to be, but I don’t get too fancy and I know by my breathing when I have gone all out. Find what works for you and consult with your doctor if needed, but here are some of my favorite ways to burn more fat in less time.
Treadmill Incline Sprints
- Warmup: 5-minute walk at 4.0mph pace with zero incline.
- Transition: 5-minutue jog at 6.0mph with 4-4.5 incline.
- HIIT: 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off for 15 minutes total at a pace of 9.0-10mph with an incline of 4.5-5.0. Your legs and booty say, “thanks.”
- Cooldown: 5-minute walk at 4.0mph pace with zero incline.
Bodyweight Circuit Training
- Warmup: 25 jumping jacks
- 20 pop squats
- 15 full burpees (pushup included)
- 12 alternating jump lunges
- 20 seconds of high knees
- Rest 60 seconds
- Repeat circuit 10 times
Abs Circuit Training
- 1 minute bicycle crunches
- 15 hanging leg raises or captain chair raises
- 30 seconds mountain climbers (alternate knee)
- 15 straight leg sit up (legs straight up in air) with weight
- 20 in-and-out abs (sit up, pull knees in and then out, repeat)
- Rest 60 seconds
- Complete circuit 5 times
Battle Rope Workout
- 60 seconds of work followed by 60 seconds of rest for 20 minutes
- Alternate between double arm motion and alternating arm motion
- The key here is to brace your core!
The possibilities for HIIT are endless, and it ends up being a fun challenge. In addition to HIIT, I incorporate these principles into my weightlifting sessions with supersets and triple drop sets, which leave me out of breath and sweating. Even more, I move quickly between sets and exercises, aiming to limit my rest time to no more than 90 seconds. This is a highly effective way to get the most of our your gym time and burn fat.
Do you like HIIT? What are some of your favorite workouts? Share in the comments below!