If you're looking to lose fat and get in shape, you may have heard of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) as a way to maximise your results in a short amount of time. But what is HIIT, and how does it work for fat loss?
HIIT is a type of exercise that involves short bursts of intense activity followed by periods of rest or low-intensity activity. This type of training has been shown to be effective for burning fat and improving overall fitness.
One of the key benefits of HIIT is that it can be done in a relatively short amount of time. A typical HIIT workout can be as short as 20 minutes, making it a convenient option for busy individuals.
But don't let the short duration fool you – HIIT is intense and challenging. The high-intensity intervals are meant to push your body to its limits, so it's important to work at a level that is safe and appropriate for your fitness level.
So how does HIIT work for fat loss? During the high-intensity intervals, your body burns calories at a higher rate, which can help you lose fat. But the real magic of HIIT happens after the workout is over. The intense activity causes your body to continue burning calories at an elevated rate, even after you've stopped exercising. This is known as the "after-burn effect," and it can help you continue to burn fat and calories throughout the day.
Additionally, HIIT has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity, which can help your body use fat as fuel more efficiently. This can lead to greater fat loss over time.
Of course, as with any exercise program, it's important to consult with a qualified health professional before starting a HIIT routine, especially if you have any underlying medical conditions. It's also a good idea to work with a certified personal trainer to develop a HIIT program that is tailored to your individual needs and goals.
In conclusion, HIIT is a highly effective and efficient way to burn fat and improve overall fitness. Its short duration and intense nature make it a convenient option for busy individuals, and the afterburn effect can help you continue burning calories long after your workout is over.
With the guidance of a medical professional and a certified trainer, HIIT can be a powerful tool in your fat loss journey.
What some of the research is saying...
Here are a few studies that show the physiological effects of HIIT on fat loss:
A study published in the Journal of Obesity found that participants who did HIIT three times per week for 20 minutes per session over a 12-week period lost significantly more body fat and had a greater decrease in waist circumference compared to a control group who did steady-state exercise at a moderate intensity.
Another study, published in the Journal of Applied Physiology, found that HIIT increased the body's ability to use fat as fuel during exercise and also increased the activity of fat-burning enzymes in the muscles.
A study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology found that HIIT was more effective than steady-state exercise at improving insulin sensitivity and reducing abdominal fat in obese men.
A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine analyzed the results of 39 studies and found that HIIT was superior to steady-state exercise for reducing body fat and improving cardiorespiratory fitness.
The Journal of Physiology has suggested that Low-Volume HIIT (15 minutes or less) is the safest way to use HIIT training for Fat Loss.
There are many different types of HIIT intervals that can be used in a workout. Some common examples include:
Tabata intervals: This type of HIIT involves 20 seconds of intense activity followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated for a total of four minutes. This type of interval is challenging, but it can be a highly effective way to boost metabolism and burn fat.
Sprint intervals: This type of HIIT involves short bursts of intense activity, such as sprinting, followed by periods of rest or low-intensity activity. Sprint intervals can be an effective way to improve cardiovascular fitness and burn fat.
Bodyweight intervals: This type of HIIT uses bodyweight exercises, such as push-ups, squats, and burpees, to create a high-intensity workout. Bodyweight intervals can be done anywhere and require no equipment, making them a convenient option for burning fat.
Circuit training: This type of HIIT involves moving from one exercise to another with little or no rest in between. Circuit training can be a challenging and effective way to burn fat and improve overall fitness.
Each of these types of intervals has its own benefits and can be effective for burning fat. The best type of HIIT interval for you will depend on your individual goals and fitness level. It's a good idea to experiment with different intervals and see which ones work best for you.