The Science Behind HIIT Workouts


HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, is a workout that alternates between intense anaerobic exercise and low-intensity intervals or complete rest. As a workout of high intensity, it doesn’t require much time to complete and is a great way to integrate exercise into your daily routine.

Short Workouts, Lasting Results

HIIT workouts can easily fit into anyone's daily schedule, even for those whose days are jam packed. The nature of HIIT allows you to exercise anywhere. Many of the workouts only require an open space, be it the gym, outside, or in the comfort of your home.

High-intensity interval training enables your body to burn calories without burning yourself out. The results of these workouts lend itself to muscle gain rather than muscle loss while simultaneously burning fat. Calories can continue to burn for up to 24 hours after completing one HIIT workout.

Experts have termed HIIT as the “best form of exercise” for all ages, allowing you to build endurance and challenge your body. The interval workouts require zero equipment, making it very user-friendly. HIIT recommends high-intensity intervals; however, it’s up to you to determine the intensity. Listen to your body to know what pace to follow.

Health Benefits

HIIT proves to have many benefits for your body that aren’t limited to just the duration of the workout. Many carry over into other parts of your day once you complete the exercise. HIIT workouts:

  • Effectively use your daily energy. Fluctuating from high and low-intensity rates trains your body to exert energy throughout the workout efficiently. Over time, keeping up with HIIT will teach your body how to use its energy outside of exercise adequately.
  • Boost your metabolism. As the nature of this type of exercise isn’t meant for long duration but rather high intensity, it causes your body to consume more oxygen, leading to an increased rate of metabolism.
  • Improve your heart health. The structure of HIIT improves muscular function, including that of the heart, and gets your blood pumping even more than moderate aerobic exercise can.
     

Remember to get your doctor’s approval before engaging in an exercise regimen. Visit a Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Group primary care physician for a physical or wellness exam.

 

Sources:

Exercise: The Cellular 'Fountain of Youth'

Supercharging Exercise With Interval Training

Got 10 Minutes to Spare?

Health Tip: Reap the Benefits of High-Intensity Interval Training

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