Among different types of physical activity, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is steadily gaining popularity. It is a cardiovascular exercise which implies a sequence of high- and low-intensity modes of activity. A whole HIIT workout does not take more than 30-35 minutes, giving the intense performance of an individual. Also, HIIT’s method can be used as a component of a multifaceted training program. This concept becomes increasingly popular due to its simplicity and health benefits.
The scheme of a common HIIT workout is simple. After a warm up, an athlete starts performing an intense cardio exercise. There are no limitations to a type of activity as long as it speeds up a heart rate. It can be a sprint, riding a bicycle, or doing push-ups. There is no need in attending a gym or buying specialized equipment. The main point is doing it intensely, getting close to the limit of one’s abilities. This period is not likely to take more than 90 seconds. After this burst of top performance, an athlete switches to a short period of rest. In this mode, they continue doing the same type of exercise, but the tempo is much slower. Beginners and seasoned individuals can choose different work-recovery ratios (1:2, 2:1, etc.), which makes it available to all populations.
Due to its unique core principle, HIIT is more effective than usual cardio training. The high-intensity mode is especially beneficial because it increases fat burn and endurance. Hard work leads to higher intake of oxygen and resultі in more effective burn of calories. Moreover, intense cardio makes a body loose fat even after the end of a session due to the effect of post-exercise oxygen consumption. Also, switching between high- and low-intensity performance allows to improve conditioning and helpі achieving better results during the hard work period. Besides cardiovascular benefits, HIIT lowers insulin resistance and glucose levels, improving metabolism.