Live Fit: This is my journey »

HIIT Workouts

HIIT (high intensity interval training) is basically alternating big bursts of activity with lower intensity activity for a specific period of time.  I’m a huge huge HUGE fan.  It’s really the only cardio that I do and depending on the week, I go from 2-3 days of HIIT sessions & do them post weight training and never go more than 30 minutes.  Because my goal has ALWAYS been to build muscle, I limit the amount of cardio sessions I do. I prefer a more athletic, lean physique so like to keep some mass on my body.

Benefits of HIIT:

  1. Efficient!  Awesome & effective cardio in a short amount of time.  Perfect for people on the go with a busy schedule.  I never do more than 30 minutes of ANY cardio and most days 15-20 minutes fits in perfectly to my schedule post weight training.
  2. Fat burner without losing muscle
  3. Little to no equipment needed (I will typically add weights/dumbbells to my exercises though) and you can do these exercises ANYWHERE.
  4. Increased metabolism & energy
  5. VARIETY VARIETY VARIETY!  No more getting bored running on a treadmill or sitting on a bike.  You can incorporate a new routine every single session!

My Own Cardio:

For the most part, I don’t do anything super crazy with my cardio.  Again, I limit my cardio sessions to 2-3 times a week for 20-30 minutes max.  I switch from HIIT sprints on the hills near my house to HIIT on cardio equipment (stair climber, treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc).  I do 30 seconds to 1 minute “on” at a VERY fast/hard pace and 1 minute off/recovery then repeat.  My goal is to keep my heart rate up as much as I can for those short bursts.

Other HIIT exercises that require ZERO equipment & can easily be done at home:

When doing using these exercises, I typically pick 4-5 moves and do 50 seconds to 1 minute of “work” with 15 seconds rest and repeat for 3-4 rounds.  I also add weight/dumbbells in to EVERY move that I can.

  • mountain climbers
  • dive bombers
  • switch lunges
  • jump squats
  • tuck jumps
  • pulse lunges
  • kettleball swings
  • planks
  • scissor kicks
  • sumo squats
  • burpees
  • push ups
  • jump rope
  • star jumps
  • V Sit
  • speed skaters
  • jumping jacks
  • walking lunges
  • high knees
  • in & out abs
  • Russian twists
  • box jumps
  • crunches

If I’m doing a quick 15-20 minute HIIT with these moves for the day, I try and pick exercises that go from super high intensity to medium intensity to lower intensity and so on.  I also try to make sure that I’m not over working a certain muscle group with back to back exercises that work the same area.

Example 1:

  1. jump squats
  2. kettleball swings
  3. burpees
  4. Russian twists
  5. dive bombers

Example 2:

  1. high knees
  2. planks
  3. pulse lunges
  4. jump rope
  5. in & out abs

 If you are anything like me, you completely LOATHE having to do cardio so it’s important to find activities that will get your heart rate up nice and high that you ENJOY doing.  Don’t be afraid to try something new.  Don’t be afraid to change it up every now and then either!