Fitness Articles

High Intensity Interval Training

Take Your Fitness and Fat Loss to the Next Level

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After completing this eight-week program, you can continue working to increase the number of work intervals per session, the duration of work intervals, or both.

You can adjust this training plan to accommodate your particular needs and goals. If you find that this schedule is either too difficult or too easy for your current fitness level, you can make adjustments to the duration and/or number of high intensity intervals as necessary. For example, if you want to train yourself for very short, frequent bursts of maximum intensity activity, your program could involve sprinting for 20 seconds and jogging/walking for 60 seconds, and repeating that 15-20 times per session.

You don’t need to swap all of your aerobic exercise for HIIT to gain the benefits. A good balance, for example, might be two sessions of HIIT per week, along with 1-2 sessions of steady-state aerobic exercise. As usual, moderation is the key to long-term success, so challenge yourself—but don’t drive yourself into the ground. Get ready to see major changes in your body and your fitness level!
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About The Author

Dean Anderson Dean Anderson
Dean Anderson has master's degrees in human services (behavioral psychology/stress management) and liberal studies. His interest in healthy living began at the age of 50 when he confronted his own morbid obesity and health issues. He joined SparkPeople and lost 150 pounds and regained his health. Dean has earned a personal training certification from ACE and received training as a lifestyle and weight management consultant. See all of Dean's articles.

Member Comments

  • DC_FREE
    this was super helpful. I think one of the most helpful bits in this article was the advantages Dean made on HIIT. He affirms the benefits of HIIT and makes a convincing argument for the endurance and functional strength you gain by participating in this kind of training. I might even add the indirect argument against long distance cardio is made because you are including anaerobic and aerobic exercise in your workouts. - 7/13/2015 9:32:53 AM
  • PJACKSONRN1
    DEAN CAN U HELP ME FIND A BEGGINERS LOW IMPACT HIIT TRAINING PROGRAM THAT I CAN BUILD UP TO 30 MINS DAILY 3 TO 4 X WEEKLY? I ALSO LIKE DOING THE KETTLE BELL WORKOUT. I HAD A TOTAL KNEE REPLACEMENT 4 MONTHS AGO. AND HAVE NOT HAD ANY MAJOR PROBLEMS WITH IT OTHER THAN THE NORMAL ADJUSTMENT THAT IT GOES THRU. I NEED HELP IN THIS AREA TO STAY MOTIVATED LEARNING HOW TO EAT HEALTHIER AND STAY COMMITTED - 1/17/2015 8:33:32 AM
  • I just started with Hitt a week ago, now I got another routine. - 9/10/2014 5:19:46 PM
  • JRFITPRO
    They just brought in a new sprinting machine at my gym that kicks ass...itís called the HiTrainer. The 3 minute interval protocols are beyond what I've ever done. After 2 weeks of doing it 3 times a week I already feel a big difference. Check out their website to see some videos www.hitrainer.com - 8/12/2014 4:15:58 PM
  • Good Article. - 6/10/2014 2:35:22 AM
  • MARYO125
    HIIT really does WONDERS. I got turned onto this type of workout about two years ago and I feel toner than ever. I use 'HIIT Mix' a coached HIIT music-based workout on my iPod by a company called Motion Traxx. Fitness trainer Jessica Smith talks you through the entire workout, letting you know when to start, stop, keep the pace, and how much longer till the next interval. Itís absolutely amazing and has made HIIT one of my go-to workouts! I recommend to everybody I know: http://motiontrax
    x.com/mixes/h
    iit-mix/. - 2/26/2014 12:49:11 PM
  • PEACENCARROTS
    Good article. I like trying HIIT workouts. They are great. Makes you feel like you accomplished something in a little bit of time. - 2/11/2014 9:08:08 AM
  • MCSCRAPM
    thanks for this article Dean. I am going to try this! - 8/21/2013 1:52:38 PM
  • This is the natural way for martial arts to be practiced, so I'd say as a form of exercise it goes back several centuries at least. I've done this type of workout since my early 20s, and now at 59 I'm very healthy and in good shape; genetics has something to do with that I'm sure but so does my method of exercise. I've always listened to my body as the saying goes when doing this kind of exercise: I just do the movements as fast and hard as I can until I get so tired I have to stop, then rest until I'm ready to do it again. If you do martial art movements right you get a full body workout: there is a good variety of movement, and all of it involves the whole body, especially the midsection. - 8/7/2013 12:58:38 PM
  • Love the article. Thank you LJOHNES - 8/6/2013 10:23:13 AM
  • WANDAC2013
    "run and hide after saying the wrong thing to your spouse"...kinda scary thing to joke about considering the prevalence of domestic abuse. I get it that Dean didn't mean it in an abusive situation, but as a survivor it hit me wrong. I'm sure a better, equally "funny" example could have been found. - 8/5/2013 12:23:35 PM
  • AZYOURLILY:

    I think you can do it just by tracking time spent and distance/reps. For instance, if you're running/walking it will take you less time to go 1 mile doing HIIT than it would just walking. I think :P
    Hope that works!
    - 7/30/2013 2:48:55 PM
  • BEACHYDREAMN
    Does anyone know how to track this on the fitness tracker, in terms of calories etc? - 7/3/2013 11:49:25 AM
  • PESKIGIRL
    HIIT is the best thing! :) - 6/14/2013 8:47:41 PM
  • "run and hide from your spouse after saying the wrong thing" ... HAHA! - 6/14/2013 9:37:59 AM

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