High Intensity Interval training is short bursts of concentrated high octave activity followed by low intensity activity like walking on treadmill or a rest period, done repeatedly in a short time span. For example a vigorous exercise done for 20secs with a rest period of 10sec between the next one. It is said that a total of 30mins of 3sets of 4 exercises(depending upon the individual capacity) is good enough to moderately active individual to maintain optimum cardiovascular fitness.
The benefits of HIIT is almost double that of low impact regular aerobic activity. Done thrice a week, with a correct diet regime fitness of an individual would be more pronounced within a short span of 2 months itself. However it is imperative that proper warmup should be done before you start the HIIT as the high intensity workout would put your cardiovascular strength into play immediately. Anyone who wishes to start the HIIT has to first master to “fire” or engage the muscles of the TA (tranverse abdominus). These core muscles will hold your body in correct posture so as to prevent injuries. To build up your strength, stamina and endurance exercises of the TA should be done atleast over a month to prepare them for HIIT.
HIIT form of exercise brings the fast twitch fibers in the muscle into play which builds up athletic performance of the body. In an aerobic form of workout such as walking, running, cycling only the slow twitch muscle fibers are used. These help in endurance but the metabolic activation of the body continues only for about 2 hours post the workout. Whereas, HIIT helps raise your metabolism not only during the workout period but can last to almost 24 hours. That means one would burn calories more efficiently. HIIT causes the body to move simultaneously from into an anaerobic zone to an aerobic activity which in turn uses both fat and carbs for energy. It allows the usage of fat for energy before the glycogen reserves from the muscle are depleted. This helps in maintaining the muscle mass of a person trying to lose weight through this kind of workout. HIIT is also great for cardiovascular strength and the usage of the glycogen reserves makes it extremely beneficial for those who are insulin resistant. If one supplements the HIIT with weights would help people with osteoporosis and arthritis conditions too.
In a world where everyone wants the best results but are pressed for time and for those for whom time is an excuse for not adding exercise into their daily regime, this seems to be the ideal choice. HIIT done thrice or even twice in a week can super speed the athletic strengthening that you are looking for.
Read The Times of India article – click here