Time to HIIT the Gym

Photo: Abby Sokolowski (Wisconsin '19)

Photo: Abby Sokolowski (Wisconsin '19)

If you haven’t heard of HIIT yet, you need to get with the lingo. Seriously though, HIIT or  high-intensity interval training may just be the best thing that has ever happened to the fitness world. As a college student, it’s hard to find the time to go to the gym on a regular day let alone spend hours on end getting in a good workout. HIIT workouts usually last about 30-minutes and can be done anywhere, even in the middle of your living room.

HIIT is a training technique which mixes high intensity bursts of exercise with short active recovery periods, causing you to get your heart rate up and burn more fat in less time. It might sound easy, but if done the right way this training will have you falling to the ground gasping for air. You will leave your workout drenched in sweat from head to toe.If you want to get a lot out of your workout in a shorter period of time, this is likely the option for you. 

You Can Get With This or You Can Get With That

It’s the talk of the town for a reason. Most activities only hit one of the three major pathways (phosphagen, glycolytic, oxidative) but it’s best to focus on all three. HIIT targets all three and the benefits are unreal.

  1. Increase fat loss
  2. Increase resting metabolic rate
  3. Increase in oxygen uptake
  4. Increase in cardiovascular endurance
  5. Increase in strength

How Often Should You HIIT It?

Many people choose to do it three times a week or every other day. Allowing your body to rest on the off days, doing long duration cardio sessions or strength training will allow for better results. Although your 5-mile run does have it’s benefits, it’s probably not giving you a well rounded workout. Try to fit that in on your off days.

Why Not HIIT It Everyday?

Doing this type of training every day could cause injury. Hence the “intensity” in HIIT, it's not recommended that it be done daily as there is concern about overworking your muscles. 

Don't know where to start? Check out this 6-minute HIIT workout!