A hectic schedule and busy routine can subdue your dedication towards working out regularly. Just the thought of going through several reps and sets of exercises may seem daunting. Getting the body you desire may seem like a lost cause. But what if I asked you to commit just 10 minutes a day?
Here’s the secret: HIIT (High intensity Interval Training).
What is HIIT?
HIIT consists of short bursts of high intensity physical exertion alternated by recovery periods of low intensity. According to a team of researchers from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, a major reason behind using HIIT is that bouts of vigorous activity encourage your body to adapt better through increased cellular stress. At the same time their short length and ensuing intervals for recovery allow even untrained individuals to give their best, which would not be possible for them under steady-state intensity.
Benefits of HIIT
In their study, Zuhl and Kravitz note how “HIIT leads to similar and in some cases better improvements in shorter periods of time with some physiological markers.” Hence, the proper use of HIIT “allows exercise enthusiasts to reach their goals in a very time efficient manner.” Martin Gibala, who is the Chair of the Department of Kinesiology at McMaster University, observes ample evidence for the role of “low-volume HIT [High Intensity Training] as a potent and time-efficient training method” for promoting both cardiovascular and skeletal muscle adaptations linked to improved health.
The team of researchers from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center also noted that HIT prompted superior improvements in aerobic fitness compared to CME (Continuous Moderate Exercise).
Lastly, HIIT is extremely versatile – it can be applied to any form of exercise. Be it sprinting, squatting, pushing movements or pulling motions.
Here are a few sample HIIT workouts to get you going.
Workout 1 (Using bodyweight)
• Sprint for 15 seconds. Walk for 15 seconds. Repeat 3 more times. (2 minutes in total)
• Push ups – 15 seconds. Rest- 15 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
• Squats – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
• Pull ups – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
• Burpees – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
• Try to do as many reps as you can during the 15-second interval.
• If you can’t complete the whole rep, just hold your body as tight as you can for isometric muscular contraction.
Workout 2 (Using Weights)
This workout involves exercises known as “The Big Four”, since they train every muscle in your body.
• Back Squats for 15 seconds. Rest for 15 seconds. Repeat 4 more times. (2.5 minutes in total)
• Standing Overhead Press – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 4 times.
• Deadlift – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 4 times.
• Bench Press – 15 seconds. Rest – 15 seconds. Repeat 4 times.
• Try to use the heaviest weights that you can manage safely for 15 seconds
• Do as many reps as you can in the 15-second interval.
You can see that HIIT is time efficient, simple and effective. However, it is also quite challenging. You will have to operate at your complete best. So why not try it right now? It will take just 10 minutes!