High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has become a popular way to burn more fat more effectively for many people. To understand how it works, you need to know a little bit about how your body burns energy during exercise.
With short-term high intensity exercise for up to one minute (think sprint), your body uses its anaerobic energy system. The first 10-15 seconds are fueled by your body’s phosphate stores before it turns to glycolysis and lactic acid for energy. However, large amounts of lactic acid are taxing on the body. Fortunately, rest periods of 30-60 seconds give your body time for a complete recovery.
During prolonged moderate activity for more than 3-4 minutes (think distance running), your body switches to its aerobic energy system. As long as there is enough oxygen to fuel your exercise, your body can endure for long periods without fatiguing. Athletes who train at high altitudes where there is less oxygen build their endurance with lower oxygen levels and can then perform for longer under normal conditions without fatigue.
With HIIT, the idea is to alternate moderate exercise with intervals of high intensity to increase both aerobic and anaerobic endurance and burn more fat:
“In research, HIIT has been shown to burn adipose tissue [body fat] more effectively than low-intensity exercise – up to 50% more efficiently.” It has also been shown to speed up your metabolism, which helps you burn more calories throughout the day. (MusclesPro.com)
By manipulating your diet, you can shape how your body responds to HIIT training. Depending on your goals, HIIT can be used to sculpt, bulk up, or maintain your body and improve overall endurance. According to BodyBuilding.com, for body sculpting they recommend eating 500 calories under the amount needed to maintain your weight with a ratio of 40% high protein, 20% low carbs, and 40% high fat. If you are looking to bulk up, eat 500-1000 calories over your maintenance with 30% high protein, 50% high carbs, and 20% low fat. To maintain, stick to your maintenance calories daily in a balanced ratio of 35% high protein, 40% medium carbs, and 25% medium fat.
At Mei Fitness, our Circuit Training class offers a total body and cardiovascular workout based on HIIT principles. The aim is to tone and sculpt your body in a very fast paced class that helps you burn off those extra calories. We keep your heart rate high and build endurance by offering only short recovery breaks between each set.
“Even if you can’t physically see the results in front of you, every single effort is changing your body from the inside.” – Leonard Parker, MEI Fitness Personal Trainer and Circuit Training Class Instructor
It takes time, but the results are worth it! Join Leonard for Circuit Training Monday mornings 10 to 11 a.m. or Monday and Wednesday evenings 7 to 7:30 p.m. to try this efficient, effective workout. 800-479-6710