These days with lifestyle diseases on the rise, exercise is the need of the hour. But time constraints often are a big hurdle. All of us need that one magic regimen that will guarantee a fit mind and body.
What is High Intensity Interval Training or HITT?
HITT is all about getting maximum benefits in minimum time. It is based on work and recovery protocol also known as Interval Training. In 1996, Japanese researcher Izumi Tabata revolutionised the fitness industry by introducing the Tabata protocol. The programme’s method of 20 seconds of all-out work followed by just 10 seconds of rest for total of four minutes only gave astounding results to all those who truly followed it. That is how HITT comes into the picture.
How does it work?
One performs a short burst of high-intensity (or max-intensity) exercise, followed by a brief low-intensity activity, repeatedly, until too exhausted to continue. Though there is no universal HIIT session duration, these intense workouts typically last under 30 minutes, with times varying based on a participant’s current fitness level. HIIT is actually lower in intensity with a longer duration than Tabata. HIIT is for someone who is looking to burn fat while maintaining lean muscle.
Here’s how to do it
- If you are starting off new on your fitness commitment, follow at low intensity exercise.
- For those of us already fit, challenge yourself with an anaerobic effort and active rest HITT workout.
- If you are short on time, tweak in the effort go for Tabata for four minutes.
Dos and Don’ts
- HIIT sessions should ideally be done three times a week.
- A rested body gives better results.
- Pregnant women should avoid HIIT, so should those who are feeling unwell or recovering from injury or any disease.
- Practice good breathing techniques.
- HIIT sessions turn your body into fat-burning machine, so eat well.
- Consume proteins after a session.
- Stay well-hydrated.
- Listen to your body, when in pain, stop.
- 10 burpees followed by 10-second rest
- 20 toe reach followed by 10-second rest
- 15 push-ups followed by 10-second rest
- 20 prisoner squats followed by 10-second rest
- Rest one minute
- Repeat three times
The author is Health and Fitness Specialist and Owner, Ultimate Xcell.