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HIIT - High Intensity Interval Training

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Updated March 09, 2010

Definition: High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a type of cardio training in which you alternate short, very high intensity intervals with longer, slower intervals to recover. This type of training has been used by athletes to improve performance, but it's also been shown to benefit the average exerciser. HIIT training not only helps performance, it also improves the ability of the muscles to burn fat.

A typical HIIT workout usually lasts about 20-30 minutes and involves a 2:1 ratio, meaning your recovery intervals are twice as long as the work intervals. An example would be 5-10 high intensity sprints (working at a Level 8-9 on this perceived exertion chart) lasting 30-60 seconds interspersed with recovery intervals of 1-2 minutes (working at a Level 4-5). Examples of interval workouts.

HIIT Workouts

Source:

Talanian,J; Galloway, S; Heigenhauser, G; et al. Two weeks of high-intensity aerobic interval training increases the capacity for fat oxidation during exercise in women. J Appl Physiol 102: 1439-1447, 2007.

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