I usually work out in the morning, either long before or right after my kids go to school. Not this past Monday, however. Just like you, I received a call from the school district that we had a two-hour delay for icy roads. On one hand, I’m glad that my kids got a chance to sleep in. On the other, there went two important hours of my day, including valuable workout time!
Thankfully, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) enables you to get a workout in limited time. Encouragingly, the data shows that HIIT training leaves you fitter and stronger than prolonged moderately-paced (think treadmill 5 miles at 9 minute mile pace) exercise. Best of all, all you need is 20 minutes a day a few times a week and you’re on the road to a fitter, healthier you.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) refers to repeated bouts of high intensity exercises followed by rest. It triggers weight loss and boosts fitness levels quickly. Canadian researchers found that only a few weeks of HIIT training produced greater changes in endurance capacity than doing months of moderate – intensity exercises such as walking or slow jogging. Only six sessions of HIIT on a stationary bike resulted in dramatic improvements in several measures physical fitness.
The great thing about HIIT is that it’s so flexible. You can apply it anywhere; in a pool, on a treadmill, a bike or even on a Pilates mat or reformer. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you notice a difference!
A few years ago, I was doing my HIIT workout running next to an acquaintance on a treadmill. She remarked as I left that my workout was much quicker than hers. I explained HIIT to her and why I loved it. Three months later I ran into her at a local road race. She told me she’d adopted a HIIT approach to training and it had changed her life, her long runs were easier, her short runs more fun and her road racing was hugely improved. In short, she was doing less and reaping more benefits. She had even lost weight and inches she wasn’t expecting as a benefit.
Now is the time to give something new a try. It just may change your life, too!
~ Stacy Geant Hughes, Certified Pilates Instructor, Owner of Core Value Pilates, LLC