HIIT or better known as High Intensity Interval training is the best way to maximize your cardiovascular and strength training workouts. HIIT is bouts of highly intense exercise followed by small bouts of rest. The bouts of exercise time and rest periods will vary depending on fitness level and desired adaptation. Usually it would consist of 20 seconds of intense exercise followed by 10 to 20 seconds of rest. Again this can fluctuate depending on fitness level and goal. This type of training has been shown to sky rocket the metabolism and increase RMR( resting metabolic rate) for over 24 hours. As compared to steady state cardio which may elevate RMR for a few hours.
The reason HIIT is more effective for fat loss then long duration low intensity cardio is simple. When you do a cardio session at one continuous speed you are in what is known steady state. This is where your body has adjusted itself to the intensity and begins to become efficient and tries to conserve calories, which is the exact opposite of what we want. Let me try and clear that up, think about your car and gas mileage. When driving at a consistent speed on the highway your car becomes efficient and doesn't burn as much gas( burning less calories). Now think about the gas mileage you get when you drive fast or stop and go, the gas mileage is usually worse or you burn more gas ( Burning more calories). Now with that said HIIT interval training is a must if you want Results and want them fast!. The days of doing 45 to 60 minutes of cardio are a thing of the past.
Written by, Aaron Anderson BS, NASM CPT, NASM CES