Wellness Wednesdays – HIIT Overview

Welcome to Wellness Wednesdays at Protea MediSpa.  Every two weeks we will review some health related topics with our patients and followers.  Today, we are looking at HIIT

Definition – HIIT is “High-Intensity Interval Training”  HIIT is a broad term for workouts that involve short periods of intense exercise alternated with recovery periods.*

Have you ever used the excuse “I don’t have enough time to exercise?”  After today’s Wellness Wednesday, that excuse might just become a thing  of the past!

HIIT involves short bursts of intense exercise alternated with low-intensity recovery periods. Interestingly, it is perhaps the most time-efficient way to exercise (45).

Typically, a HIIT workout will range from 10 to 30 minutes in duration.  We all should be able to make time for that…whether at home or at the gym…or at work during a lunch break!

Check out this recent article in the http://dailynews.mcmaster.ca

Researchers at McMaster have found that a single minute of very intense exercise produces health benefits similar to longer, traditional endurance training.

The findings put to rest the common excuse for not getting in shape: there is not enough time.

“This is a very time-efficient workout strategy,” says Martin Gibala, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster and lead author on the study. “Brief bursts of intense exercise are remarkably effective.”

Scientists set out to determine how sprint interval training (SIT) compared to moderate-intensity continuous training (MICT), as recommended in public health guidelines. They examined key health indicators including cardiorespiratory fitness and insulin sensitivity, a measure of how the body regulates blood sugar.

A total of 27 sedentary men were recruited and assigned to perform three weekly sessions of either intense or moderate training for 12 weeks, or to a control group that did not exercise.

The McMaster team has previously shown that the SIT protocol, which involved three 20-second ‘all-out’ cycle sprints, was effective for boosting fitness. The workout totaled just 10 minutes, including a 2-minute warm-up and 3-minute cool down, and two minutes of easy cycling for recovery between the hard sprints.

The new study compared the SIT protocol with a group who performed 45 minutes of continuous cycling at a moderate pace, plus the same warm-up and cool down. After 12 weeks of training, the results were remarkably similar, even though the MICT protocol involved five times as much exercise and a five-fold greater time commitment.

“Most people cite ‘lack of time’ as the main reason for not being active”, according to Gibala. “Our study shows that an interval-based approach can be more efficient — you can get health and fitness benefits comparable to the traditional approach, in less time.”

Gibala has been studying interval training for more than a decade. Over time, his team has experimented with different protocols in an effort to identify the most time-efficient

“The basic principles apply to many forms of exercise,” he says. “Climbing a few flights of stairs on your lunch hour can provide a quick and effective workout. The health benefits are significant.”

The findings are published online in the journal PLOS ONE.

 

Healthline.com gives a quick example of an HIIT routine that might just work for you:

How to Get Started With HIIT

There are many ways to add high-intensity intervals to your exercise routine, so it isn’t hard to get started.

To begin, you just need to choose your activity (running, biking, jumping, etc.).

Then, you can experiment with different durations of exercise and recovery, or how long you are performing intense exercise and how long you are recovering.

Here are a few simple examples of HIIT workouts:

  • Using a stationary bike, pedal as hard and fast as possible for 30 seconds. Then, pedal at a slow, easy pace for two to four minutes. Repeat this pattern for 15 to 30 minutes.
  • After jogging to warm up, sprint as fast as you can for 15 seconds. Then, walk or jog at a slow pace for one to two minutes. Repeat this pattern for 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Perform squat jumps (video) as quickly as possible for 30 to 90 seconds. Then, stand or walk for 30 to 90 seconds. Repeat this pattern for 10 to 20 minutes.

While these examples can get you started, you should modify your own routine based on your own preferences.

Happy Wellness Wednesday!
Natural, Beautiful YOU!

 

 

 

*source – http://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-hiit#section1

 

 

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