The Secret Sauce Behind HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

If you haven’t ever tried HIIT before, you are totally missing out on life!

HIIT, which is High-Intensity Interval Training, is the secret sauce behind how I was able to find the muscle definition I was always searching for- without having to starve myself.

HIIT training includes intervals of high-intensity bursts to get your heart rate soaring, to ultimately burn fat.

A treadmill example includes:

  • Walking at a speed of 4. 0 for 1 minute
  • Sprinting at a speed of 9.2 for 1 minute
  • Walking at a speed of 4.0 for 1 minute 15 seconds
  • Sprinting at a speed of 9.4 for 1 minute
  • Walking at a speed of 4.0 for 1 minute 30 seconds
  • Sprinting at a speed of 9.6 for 1 minute
  • Walking at a speed of 4.0 for 1 minute and 30 seconds
  • Sprinting at a speed of 9.8 for 1 minute
  • Walking at a speed of 4.0 for 1 minute and 30 seconds
  • Sprinting at a speed of 10.0 for 1 minute
  • Cool down for 2 minutes.

Total time = 14 minutes.

Now people do stretch this out longer and walk for 2 minutes, but I found that the shortest rests work best for me.

The goal of HIIT training is to break a sweat and keep your heart rate elevated, so you don’t want to be resting too long.

A bodyweight example includes:

  • 15 jump squats
  • 10 lunges on each leg
  • 30 seconds of mountain climbers
  • 20 jumping jacks

This equals 1 round.  Repeat for a total of 5 rounds with minimal rest in between rounds.

Total time 15-20 minutes depending on your speed.

Do you see the pattern?

You are using speed AND your body weight to elevate your heart rate so high that you begin to blast through fat!

Freakin’ amazing!

Or…you might be shaking your head as you read this thinking, this girl is crazy.

But hear me out for a second.

I truly believe HIIT is the answer to our problems.

First of all, you only need 15-20 minutes to get an effective workout.

This is comparable to the calories you burn when you’re running on the treadmill for 45 minutes!

Ugh, hello?  20 minutes vs 45 minutes?

The reality of life is that we want quick solutions to solve our problems.

Some of us don’t have two hours to devote daily to the gym.

HIIT is great when you feel like you’re short on time.

Second, you don’t even need a gym!

I mean, does it get easier than this?!

Sometimes I may add a light medicine ball or kettlebell to the mix but it’s definitely not necessary.

All you need is your own body weight and speed to break a sweat.

Some good exercises to incorporate are the ones I mentioned like squats, lunges, mountain climbers and jumping jacks.

But some other ones include push-ups (yes, girly ones count too), tricep dips, burpees, curtsey lunges, kettlebell swings, high-knees, box jumps, and sit-ups.

Third, you will NEVER feel bored with HIIT.

Have you ever ran on a treadmill for 30 minutes, literally counting seconds for the time to fly by?

You will never feel that way with HIIT.

You’re so busy keeping count of your reps and sets, time is the last thing on your mind.

Also, instead of running in 1 spot for 30 minutes like on a treadmill, with HIIT, you’re doing a whole bunch of different exercises, keeping your body and mind engaged and fully challenged.

Time will literally fly by.

And you know what they say… time flies when you’re having fun!

Fourth, as I mentioned before- 20 minutes of HIIT is comparable to 45 minutes of running on the treadmill.

To make it simple, HIIT increases the body’s ability to burn fat stores for energy compared to a steady-state exercise like running on the treadmill.

Not only do you burn more calories in a shorter period of time, but HIIT training is also known to rev up your metabolism, so you’re burning calories post-workout also!

Many people think HIIT training is for athletes or people who are in really good shape.

This type of training is definitely intense and difficult.

But I really believe you can start in beginner mode and work yourself up to the harder exercises.

Remember, your goal isn’t to do 100 push-ups… your goal is to elevate your heart rate to get in the fat-burning zone.

If you’re a beginner at HIIT, start small and slow.

The beauty of the human body is that it can adjust to almost anything.

The more you practice and work at it, the better you will become.

Work on perfecting your form with these exercises before executing them for time.

If you’re new at squats or lunges, use a mirror and grab on to a chair for support and focus on getting in the right position.

Then remove the support (chair) and use your own body weight.

Once you have an exercise down, you’re ready for speed and light free weights to increase the challenge.

Also, HIIT incorporates many different types of exercises, so if a particular exercise doesn’t feel “right” or comfortable to you, follow your intuition and revisit it later when your strength and performance have increased.

I have never been able to reach the desired muscle tone I was looking for before HIIT came into my life.

Remember I’m a no supplement kind of girl.

HIIT has really given my body the challenge and definition it was looking for.

You never know what you’re body will love and enjoy unless you try something, and HIIT training is definitely worth giving a try!

Photo: https://unsplash.com/@brucemars

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