It’s simple. Short periods of intense aerobic exercise followed by less-intense recovery periods. Alternating between these two is the key to High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). And, it seems, there are many benefits to pushing your limits by increasing your heart rate and Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) in a fast-paced, 15- to 30-minute workout.
HIIT is more efficient
If you ask us, the research is pretty amazing. In fact you can accomplish more in 15 minutes of interval training than by jogging on a treadmill for an entire hour. And just two weeks of HIIT improves your aerobic capacity as much as six to eight weeks of traditional endurance training. (ACSM, 2011). With those numbers in mind, we designed the majority of Gixo classes (which are 15-30 minutes in length) to contain varying durations of intervals so you get more punch out of each workout.
HIIT is more effective
Not only do you burn more calories during your HIIT routine, but intense exertion enables your body to continue burning fat for a whole 24 hours after your workout. That’s because HIIT creates a high Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) or Oxygen Debt, which helps break down and metabolize your fat stores. (Now that’s some science anybody can love.) As if that’s not enough to convince you, studies have shown that HIIT results in greater gains in aerobic and anaerobic capacity than traditional aerobic exercise. And, of course, you can count on your Gixo coach to challenge you in order to maximize these benefits.
How to Perform a HIIT workout (you know, like the ones we’ve created at GIXO).
Choose any form of cardio:
- Running (treadmill, track, outdoor, etc.)
- Biking (stationary, road bike, mountain bike)
- Battle ropes
- Rowing machine
- Boxing (punching bag)
Warm up: 5-10 minutes with your heart rate slowly increasing
Max effort: 1 minute, skyrocketing your heart rate and RPE to 90 percent of your maximum
Recovery zone: 1 minute recovery (advanced) or 2 minutes recovery (beginner) at 60-70 percent of heart rate maximum
Repeat: 6 times (advanced) or 4 times (beginner)
Cool down: 5 minutes of walking or stretching
You certainly could do it by yourself. But if you’re like us, you’ll get a lot more out of it with a coach to pace you, push you, and power you through the entire workout. So jump on and join one of our Gixo HIIT classes: Indoor Intervals, Strength Tabatas, or The Super Quickie.
Not only will your Gixo coach provide you with the appropriate Heart Rate Zones, the coach will encourage you to work at higher intensities and push harder during the intervals as you become more fit and comfortable with HIIT.