Think of high-intensity interval training (aka HIIT workouts) — where you alternate short bursts of intense exercise and active recovery time — as the workout gift that keeps on giving. First, it’s designed to burn more calories and fat in less time, giving you that excuse-squashing way to squeeze in a sweat. Then, it revs up your heart rate and alters metabolic pathways so much so that you keep torching calories even after you stop moving. So it’s basically the go-to for anyone looking to get fit, strong and slim without dedicating hours to doing so. (Can anyone say no to that?)
The catch: You have to learn how to do it (and recognize whether you’re pushing hard enough), give it your all and switch up your approach every now and then. To get you doing just that, we rounded up top resources for making your HIIT workout super effective, fun — and speedy. So whether you’re a beginner exerciser or more advanced athlete, you’ll HIIT it big with these tips.
What Is High-Intensity Interval Training (aka HIIT)?
Before jumping into your first round of intervals, you’ll want a base of knowledge. After all knowing why exactly you’re busting your butt through those crazy-hard intervals will help motivate you to keep pushing forward. Here, some expert insight on the benefits of high-intensity interval training, plus how to make each routine work for you.
Bodyweight HIIT Workouts: Anytime, Anywhere
One of the awesome benefits of interval training is that you can do it anywhere. These killer bodyweight workouts will rev up your metabolism, whether you’re at the gym, in your hotel or on the beach. No equipment necessary! And beginners, keep in mind they’re still totally doable for you.
Cardio Workouts: HIIT and Run
Beat cardio machine boredom and put some pep to your step with these interval-inspired cardio-centric workouts. You’ll push it on the treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine, air bike and even with the help of a jump rope.
HIIT Strength Workouts: More Fit Every Day
These short but effective workouts combine weights and cardio bursts, so you get the best of both workout worlds. You’ll finish feeling breathless but oh so strong, thanks to a med ball, yoga-inspired routines and more.
Originally published April 2017. Updated February 2018.