Think you have to spend more time in the gym in order to meet your fitness goals? Think again.
Because with high-intensity interval training (HIIT), you'll not only get in better shape, sooner — you'll also spend way less time working out.
So what is HIIT?
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is an advanced form of interval training and an exercise strategy alternating periods of short, intense anaerobic exercise with less intense recovery periods.
Basically, that means you’ll be working as hard you possibly can for a short amount of time, resting, then working hard again. And an entire HIIT session usually only lasts for about 10 to 20 minutes.
While traditional HIIT focuses on forms of cardio like sprinting and cycling, you can also throw exercises like box jumps, push ups, pull ups and burpees into the mix for an incredibly quick and effective workout.
Here are seven reasons why you should spend less time working out with HIIT:
1. It removes the "I don't have time" excuse.
If you're like most people, the biggest reason you aren't always consistent with your workouts is that you simply don't have time to spend an hour or two of your day 3-5 days a week working out.
But with HIIT, that excuse goes out the window. Because no matter how busy you are, everyone has an extra 12-15 minutes a day to work out. So get rid of your excuses and start training hard today.
2. It's more efficient.
While most people assume that running for miles is the best way to lose weight, that's actually not the case. In fact, you can make more progress in just 15 minutes of HIIT than you can running for an entire hour.
This makes it perfect for anyone who wants to get in better shape, but doesn't want to spend hours doing it.
3. You'll get less bored.
I don't know about you, but when I used to go for a long run or try and stay on the elliptical machine for ages, I'd end up getting bored out of my mind from working at the same pace for a long period of time.
But even I find it hard to get bored with HIIT workouts. Because they're constantly changing and forcing you to work as hard as you can, the workouts are over before you know it. You'll never get bored doing them (if you are, you're probably not working hard enough).
4. You'll burn more calories.
If you're trying to lose weight, you'll be happy to know that just 10 minutes of HIIT can burn more calories than half an hour on a treadmill.
More calories in less time; what could be better than that?
Plus, your body will actually continue to burn more calories after a bout of HIIT for 24-48 hours after your workout.
5. You'll boost your metabolism (big time!).
Not only will you burn more calories doing HIIT, studies show that the intense form of training stimulates production of your Human Growth Hormone (HGH) up to 450 percent during the 24 hours after you finish HIIT.
And you know what that means… even if you end up indulging a little more that day, your body will still burn it off. Sweet!
6. You'll lose fat, not muscle.
If you're trying to lose body fat while retaining (or increasing) muscle, short, efficient HIIT workouts are the ideal choice. While longer aerobic workouts can cause your body to burn both fat and muscle, interval training will ensure you burn most of your calories from fat.
And HIIT can help you burn fat faster than any other form of exercise, which is why athletes, bodybuilders and regular gym-goers alike swear by it when they want to shave off body fat.
7. You'll get results quicker.
While longer aerobic workouts often take 3-4 weeks (or more) to notice any results, short, intense interval training workouts can get you results in as little as two weeks — and often less.
In fact, it's not entirely uncommon for exercisers to start feeling stronger, fitter and even noticing changes in their body after doing interval training consistently for a single week. And think about how those changes will add up once you do them for a month or more!
But remember: the harder you work, the faster you'll reach your fitness goals.
So work hard, challenge yourself, and have fun! Give short, intense workouts a try, and watch as you excel to a whole new level of fitness.