In my post, 11 tips to turn your body into a fat burning machine , one of the exercise techniques I mentioned was a HIIT workout. The full meaning of HIIT is High-Intensity Interval Training and it is basically doing a high intensity intense exercise followed by a more moderate form of exercise. Usual HIIT sessions may vary from 9–20 minutes. These short, intense workouts provide improved athletic capacity and condition, improved glucose metabolism, and improved fat burning 1,2,3
You can do HIIT
- without a machine e.g by doing skipping, jumping jacks, burpees, planks, high knees, mountain climbers, etc.
- with machines e.g elliptical machine, cross trainer, rowing machine, treadmill, exercise bike or any form of exercise.
How to do a HIIT workout
There are other variations of HIIT but I will be talking about the original protocol. The original convention for HIIT workouts are a 2:1 ratio of work to recovery periods, for example, 30 seconds of jogging alternated with 15 seconds of walking.
- Warm up for about 3-4 minutes
- Perform a high intensity exercise for a determined number of seconds e.g 30 seconds. If you are a beginner to exercise, you can do as low as 10 seconds. If you are a veteran, you can do as high as 1 minute.
- Then do a low – medium intensity exercise for twice the amount of time you did the high intensity exercise. For example, if you did your high intensity exercise for 30 seconds, then you will need to do your low intensity exercise for 1 minute.
- Repeat this cycle of high intensity exercise and low intensity exercise for at least 6 times. 20 minutes is enough time for an effective HIIT.
- Cool down for another 3 minutes and stretch your muscles.
I assure you that if you add this to your workout routine about 2- 3 times a week, you will burn a good amount of fat!
- Perry, Christopher G.R.; Heigenhauser, George J.F.; Bonen, Arend; Spriet, Lawrence L. (December 2008). “High-intensity aerobic interval training increases fat and carbohydrate metabolic capacities in human skeletal muscle”. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism 33 (6): 1112-1123.
- Laursen, P.B.; Jenkins D.G. (2002). “The Scientific Basis for High-Intensity Interval Training: Optimising Training Programmes and Maximising Performance in Highly Trained Endurance Athletes”. Sports Medicine 32 (1): 53-73.
- Talanian, Jason L.; Stuart D. R. Galloway, George J. F. Heigenhauser, Arend Bonen, Lawrence L. Spriet (2007). “Two weeks of high-intensity aerobic interval training increases the capacity for fat oxidation during exercise in women”. Journal of Applied Physiology 102 (4): 1439-1447. doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.01098.2006.