Fitness: HIIT

What is HIIT?

High Intensity Interval Training: Alternating between periods of short, intense anaerobic exercise with less intense recovery periods.

What does it mean?

It’s the fastest and most efficient way to burn maximum calories in minimum time. Studies have revealed that HIIT significantly reduces resting and exercise heart rate while improving VO2max (the maximum amount of oxygen your body is capable of utilizing in one minute). HIIT also significantly improves power output as well as fatigue resistance.

HIIT burns calories far beyond the duration of the workout. It can boost your endurance allowing you to go exercise for longer periods with less effort as you improve. You’ll cut your workout in half because these workouts are far more efficient then any other kind. “You can get the same, if not greater, results in half the time of low-intensity longer duration workout sessions” (Cocks et al., 2013). 

Tabata Workout

Tabata training is one of the most popular forms of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). It consists of eight rounds of ultra-high-intensity exercises in a specific 20-seconds-on, 10-seconds-off interval. It's also known as the longest 4 minutes of your life but I love it!


Cocks et al. (2013). Sprint interval and endurance training are equally effective in increasing muscle microvascular density and eNOS content in sedentary males. The Journal of Physiology, 591(3), pp.641-656.

Milanović, Z., Sporiš, G., & Weston, M. (2015). Effectiveness of high-intensity interval training (HIT) and continuous endurance training for VO 2max improvements: a systematic review and meta-analysis of controlled trials. Sports medicine, 45, 1469-1481.

Shepherd, S. O., Cocks, M., Tipton, K. D., Ranasinghe, A. M., Barker, T. A., Burniston, J. G., ... & Shaw, C. S. (2013). Sprint interval and traditional endurance training increase net intramuscular triglyceride breakdown and expression of perilipin 2 and 5. The Journal of physiology, 591(3), 657-675.


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