Doing longer intervals (not HIIT) can be useful, they're just a different thing. Speedwork intervals (to increase your overall running speed) are usually 1/4 or 1/2 mile segments. You can also do hill intervals on the treadmill that are longer segments which will help your overall conditioning as well.
oops! Sorry for the mix up of terminology :) Thank you for the correction. Does interval training, what I described originally, have similar (but less) results/effects on the body? Is interval still a useful training method or should I focus on doing long steady endurance runs mixed in with 1-2 HIIT workouts a week?
My only problem about trying out the HIIIT is that I find it takes a long time for the treadmill to pick up speed or to slow down once I hit my max... but at the same time I don't think I would be able to make myself sprint full out when I am on a run outdoors by myself. Once I have recovered from my hour run this evening I will try out HIIT, but I am tad scared.
yeah, there's some debate about the max length of the HIIT; most of them agree that 60 seconds is the upper reach. Anything above 60 seconds is not HIIT. I usually stay in the 30 sec-45 sec range for the high intensity interval and it works well.
I agree, especially with the 30. Even 60 is too long. If you can sustain anything for 60 full seconds, it's not high intensity enough to be HIIT.
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I also totally agree with the other 2 posters. HIIT is incredibly intense. I do a 20 minute HIIT 2 times a week and by the end I can barely make it up the stairs to shower! I only do 30 second intervals, but have 90 second recovery, and those 30 second intervals are ALL OUT til I am gasping! I do sprints, mountain climbers, bicycles, high knees, and jump squats. Let me tell you, that 90 second recovery flies by and the 30 second interval seems like an eternity. I feel amazing the rest of the day though with alot of energy and I continue to sweat for almost 2 hours after the workout, but right after that last interval I feel like I could die. That's true HIIT and that's why you really can't do it more than like 2 times a week. It's very hard on the body and you'll need the recovery time.
Skywatchers is right. The difference between your recovery and interval needs to be much greater. When I was doing it on the treadmill my recovery was 4.0 for 90 seconds then 9.0 for 30 seconds (thats in mph). I found I actually had to start the increase in pace at about 75 seconds into my recovery as it took that long for the treadmill to adjust the speed. Usually I could only do 8 sets like this then I dropped the interval to 8.5 for a less intense interval for 2 more. My legs were spaghetti by the end and it was all I could do to walk for about 5 mins (at about 2 mph!) as a cool down. Hope this helps.
I apologize if this sounds rude because I sincerely don't mean it that way, but you're doing it wrong.
What you're doing is regular interval training, not HIIT.
For HIIT, your recovery pace would actually be a walk. Then, for your high intensity interval, you would jack up your speed until you were running at a level 9 out of 10 (10 being running for your life). You would run at that level for 60 seconds or less, then drop down to your recovery walk which would be somewhere around 3.5 on the treadmill, just a moderate walk. You would recover 30 - 90 sec and then hit your high intensity interval again.
What differentiates HIIT from regular interval training is the intensity of that interval and the recovery pace. Your high intensity interval should be almost your maximal effort - a pace you could not physically sustain for more than 60 seconds. It SHOULD leave you gasping for breath and may even induce some tummy discomfort. That's when you know you're doing it right. If you can do HIIT more than 20 minutes, you're not doing it right. It should be so hard and intense that you are overjoyed when it's over because you're spent.
I was doing some HIIT yesterday at the gym and was wondering how much faster/intense my intervals need to be in order to be effective. I usually run at about 6.5-6.7 if I am running at a consistent pace, I think that is 8-8:30/mile maybe a bit slower. If I do my interval training I do my recovery pace at 6.4-6.5 and for 30 seconds I up it to 7.2-7.4. I find it hard, but I am not gasping for breath or getting my heart rate up over 170-175. I know that is a high heart rate, but I have excellent cardio and my heart rate drops extremely quickly as soon as I return to my recovery pace.
I was just wondering how much of an increase in speed/intensity I need to really achieve an excellent HIIT workout. Should I increase my interval time to 45 seconds instead of 30? Does even the slight increase of speed/intensity, for example from 6.4 to 6.8, make for a sufficient interval workout?
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