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5 Lesser Known Benefits Of HIIT Workouts

5 Lesser Known Benefits of HIIT Workouts

  1. Are you currently looking for a more impactful and challenging way to train?
  2. Are you currently engaged in HIIT workouts?
  3. Are you results oriented with your training?

One method of training that has always been a prescription for training in my camp involves the application of HIIT workouts. In case you’re not familiar HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training and is pronounced “hit.” The name is cool and the impact of this style of training lives up to the name.

Benefits Of HIIT Workouts 

HIIT workouts have been commonly practiced by athletes for years. Aside from this training being used for preparing for athletic competition HIIT has steadily been growing in the mainstream fitness community, but it’s something I’ve always kept as common practice in my own training.

If you’ve been looking to change up your training, or are steadily working to kick things into the high gear then here are a few reasons you need to start implementing HIIT workouts into your program in case you have been on the fence about it!

1) Time efficiency:

I typically structure my HIIT workouts using the K.I.S.S. method (Keep It Simple Stupid). You can do the same and because the structure is simple you’ll be able to get through the training at a more efficient pace.

You want to structure a HIIT workout by selecting one or two exercises to perform at a higher pace. Typically the objective in HIIT is to perform an exercise with as much effort and speed as you possibly can for the working interval which is then followed by an active recovery.

Because HIIT workouts involve more intense intervals you’ll also start experiencing what I refer to as battle fatigue somewhere between the 30 to 45 minute mark. This is about the time you will finish up the day’s work.

2) Improved endurance

I know what you’re thinking how does more intense work boost my endurance? Well it can!

In fact, there have been some reputable studies done showing how HIIT workouts have increased endurance in subjects based on blood pressure measures and mitochondria counts.

Regardless of these studies I’ve field tested this with both myself and my students for years. This is why HIIT translates over so well into the world of MMA and martial arts for conditioning. Muay Thai is endurance based and I promise you this has been one hell of an asset for my students that are competing fighters.

The next time you’re on a long hike, walk, or run make sure you pick up the pace for a bout of more intense work. Test and then retest your runs to make the comparison. I guarantee you’ll document improvement.

3) Burn calories for hours

An effectively run HIIT workout will cause you to burn more calories during and after a workout than compared to an aerobic workout session. This is not hard to believe with the amount of effort that is involved with HIIT workouts.

To me there’s no better feeling than the heart pounding from having done some effective work. When this is happening for 45 minutes straight you know you’re torching some serious calories.

EPOC, Exercise Post Oxygen Consumption is your body’s ability to return back to homeostasis after a bout of exercise. During EPOC there is a significant calorie burn until the body is returned back to a balanced state. With HIIT workouts this caloric expenditure is much higher in EPOC than compared to steady state exercise.

So after you finish kicking your ass into high gear during a HIIT workout you can expect to burn calories at a higher rate for hours after training.

4) Superior heart health

HIIT workouts are great for your ticker. Because HIIT workouts increase pressure demands on your blood vessels they adapt by becoming more elastic allowing for more efficient blood flow to and from your heart.

The human body is designed to work in interval bursts. Your body will respond and manage stress better by performing more intense intervals of work followed by active rest intervals. Of course the more you do this you develop a greater work capacity for this type of training.

With that being said HIIT can even be easier to tolerate than a moderate workout for people with coronary artery disease. Of course it’s always a good idea to have a handle on your rating of perceived exertion.

5) Many faces

HIIT workouts can have many faces. In other words these workouts can involve a great deal more than just cranking out some sprints.

You can structure your HIIT workouts to involve cycling, rowing, sprinting, kettlebell swings, or even bodyweight movements to help you achieve the desired outcome for physical exertion.

No matter your exercise of choice exercises such as kettlebell swings and burpees have been shown to enhance VO2 max in similar ways. The good thing is that with your HIIT workouts you don’t have to limit yourself to one method of exercise.

HIIT Workouts: The Takeaway

When looking to get the most out of your training you always want quality to trump quantity. HIIT workouts provide a simple model for you to achieve optimal fitness and health benefits while saving time, equipment, and money.

Are you currently including any HIIT workouts with your training? 

What type of HIIT workouts do you do? 

Post up and share in the comments here below. 

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Brandon

I'm a Certified Strength And Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and author. I have had over 17 years experience in MMA fitness, strength and conditoning, and athletic performance for most every sport. As an author and specialist I've written close to a million words on fitness and strength. I'm also a Muay Thai practictioner and enjoy helping others to reach their peak potential through fitness and performance.

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