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HIIT: Work Hard, Burn Lots of Fat

Working out is supposed to be intense. So, what's the difference between high intensity interval training (HIIT) and your run-of-the-mill workout routines? With HIIT, it's not about the actual exercises that you do. It's all about the way you structure your workout and how hard you work.  

During HIIT workouts, you push your body to it's maximum physical abilities in short bursts of activity. This helps you reach your body's peak metabolic rate and burn more calories and fat. In fact, your body will continue burning calories even after you conclude your workout. 

At ClubFitness, we have certified personal trainers who can help you define and embark on your own high intensity interval training program. Or, you can join a group HIIT workout program led by one of our knowledgeable instructors. 

Check out the schedule of classes to find a HIIT class at either of our location, at Oak Branch or Green Valley. 

What is HIIT? 

There are high-intensity workouts and there's interval training. You could pursue either of these types of exercise independently, but they will not yield the same results as a true HIIT workout program. In order for it to be HIIT, your workout has to combine both elements: high intensity exercises completed in timed intervals. 

The premise of HIIT is really simple: work really, really hard, then rest, then push yourself to the max again. Rinse, repeat.

A typical HIIT workout program consists of several exercises completed in spurts. Each exercise is performed for a timed duration – from 30 seconds to three minutes – and is followed by a low-intensity recovery period of roughly the same length. 

The exercises can be the same ones you've always done – running, cycling, climbing stairs. Your sets can also include resistance training, such as kettle bells swings, weighted squats or rope jumping jacks. Of course, you or your instructor can come up with entirely new activities. You just have to push yourself to the limit during each interval. 

Rest following each exercise is just as important as maxing out your body's performance during peak physical activity. Conditioning your body to continually adjust between high-intensity and low-intensity states encourages a higher rate of calorie-burning, leading to a great fat loss. 

What to Expect from HIIT at ClubFitness

HIIT classes at ClubFitness last one hour and include a 5-minute warm-up period at the start of class, as well as a cool-down period of the same duration at the conclusion. All HIIT classes are Tabata-based, alternating hard-charging exercise (80-90% maximum effort) with periods of recovery. Interval lengths are chosen by each individual instructor, and can range anywhere between 20 and 90 seconds. 

Instructors  monitor participants for proper technique and may offer corrective suggestions as necessary. Let your instructor know prior to the start of class of any limitations, injuries or other physical hindrances.

Be sure to bring a refillable water bottle and wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes and closed-toe, athletic shoes.

Benefits of HIIT

High intensity interval training programs can help you achieve your workout goals faster and more efficiently than other forms of exercise. Benefits of HIIT include:  

Increasing Endurance

Regularly pushing yourself to your physical limits helps you push those limits farther. Some studies have shown that doing HIIT for as little as eight weeks can help you double your endurance. 

Burning Fat, Not Muscle 

Cardio exercise tends to promote muscle loss along with fat. Blending your HIIT workout with some weight training allows you to burn fat while preserving your hard-won muscles mass. 

Boosting Your Metabolism 

HIIT stimulates increased natural production of the human growth hormone (HGH) in your body for up to 24 hours following the workout. The hormone helps your body burn more calories. As a bonus, HGH also slows down the aging process of cells. 

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