I’ve worked with many busy women throughout my time as a personal trainer and there’s always one workout regime that seems to fit their lifestyles perfectly: high-intensity interval training, or HIIT for short.
Let’s face it, most of us don’t have much time for long sessions or cardio and purchasing equipment like dumbbells and kettlebells can get both expensive and bothersome. If you’re serious about burning fat and toning your body, then here are 7 benefits of HIIT so you can understand why you should do it too.
1. Can be done anywhere
HIIT can be done virtually anywhere. As long as you have a few minutes to spare, HIIT can be done in a class, on your own at home, in a gym, at a hotel room or even outdoors.
This is fantastic because it means you don’t need to worry about living close to a gym or that you are making too much noise for the neighbours while working out. It’s convenient, flexible and always at hand. You can take your workout with you even when going on holiday or visting family where it could get more challenging to hit the gym or exercise.
2. Can be done alone or with others
HIIT can make a fantastic group activity. It’s possible to do it alone at home but you could also do it in a class with your friends. You could even invite friends over to have a HIIT session together while turning the volume up on your favourit songs.
Of course, you could also do it with a personal trainer that can monitor your progress, suggest improvements and ultimately teach you how to use HIIT to burn fat fast and efficiently.
3. Time efficient
HIIT can be done in just 5 minutes or take up to 30 minutes with longer sessions. This makes it incredibly convenient for busy individuals that can’t seem to find time to visit the gym or to hook up with friends to go for a run.
This also completely removes the excuse that you don’t have time to get fit. HIIT is simple to learn and has flexible times thanks to the nature of how it works. Short bursts of intense exercise will shake up your body and help you lose weight faster than strength training or cardio alone.
4. Improves cardio fitness
HIIT is like the best of both worlds because it can improve your cardio performance but also help you maintain muscle mass. It’s important to boost your cardio performance because it essentially governs how healthy your heart is.
An unhealthy heart that hasn’t seen much exercise for a long time will ultimately be slower and less efficient. However, a heart that has been training with HIIT for an extended period will be in top form.
5. Physical and mental challenge
HIIT challenges not just your body, but also your mind. There really is no other form of exercise that can test your mental fortitude like HIIT does. It’s incredibly rough on not just your body, but also your mind. Intense workouts will make you feel like you’re going to pass out. The point is to find that fine line where you can put the most effort in without causing damage, push your limits to aid growth.
HIIT helps you push those physical and mental barriers that you’ve set for yourself in order to make you realise that you are capable of changing your body and burning off the fat you don’t want.
6. No need for equipment
Another great benefit of HIIT is that there are many exercises you can perform in a HIIT session that don't need equipment at all. You don’t need expensive machines like rowers and steppers and you won’t need to purchase a heavy set of dumbbells either.
At most, all you’re going to need is a mat to make it easier for you to get on the ground and perhaps a bench or a slightly raised surface to use in other exercises - this can be a bed, a couch, a sturdy chair o kitchen counter.
7. Afterburn effect
The afterburn effect is when you continue to burn calories even after you’ve finished exercising. The idea is that your body needs more fuel to help your muscles recover from a HIIT workout which can last op to 36-48 hours after your workout. In other words, even if you feel completely exhausted after a HIIT session, you’ll be glad to know that you’re still burning calories while resting.
If you'd like to drop body fat and gain toned muscles, you will need to focus on both your nutrition and exercise regime to ensure they both serve your goal. If you want to find out more, don’t hesitate to contact me.
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