Intense interval training is a workout designed mainly for professional athletes. Can less professional athletes benefit from its techniques and how does it affect physical fitness?
What is HIIT training?
HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training and is a set of high intensity interval exercises. The program was created for people who want to quickly burn fat tissue and increase efficiency of the body. Such demanding training is recommended for people who have experience in sports, are physically fit and have at least average respiratory capacity. Interval physical activity at an intense level was created for professional athletes who are preparing for important competitions. HIIT is supposed to raise the form in a short time and give almost immediate results. According to experts, interval training brings the expected results three times faster – it improves physical strength and endurance.
How to perform HIIT training?
HIIT consists in interweaving short sets of cardio and anaerobic exercises. The workout is based on a combination of any endurance and strength activities. The set of exercises includes running, cycling, skipping, squats or push-ups, all performed with high intensity and commitment. The timing and distribution of intense and less strenuous intervals depends on the athlete’s fitness, strength and capacity. The entire series should last no longer than 30 minutes per day. HIIT training by beginners can be performed up to 3 times a week. The frequency of this type of training can be gradually increased with increasing form and progress made.
Benefits of HIIT training
Performed exercises have a positive impact on health, performance, and physical parameters of the athlete. Adequate HIIT reduces the risk of diabetes, because the tissues become more sensitive to insulin, helps to reduce body fat, leads to hormonal increase (adrenaline or growth hormone), improves the work of the cardiovascular system, reduces the risk of atherosclerosis, and provides the body with more oxygen. Thanks to intensive interval training, muscle tissue grows faster, gains more strength, and at the same time does not lose the speed of subsequent repetitions.
Additionally, endurance training is also a test of character, strengthening mental strength and self-confidence of the athlete. Successive overcoming of limits has a positive influence on motivation for further action. One of the advantages is the short duration of training with three times faster effects. Researchers note significant improvements in respiratory capacity and physical strength after just six training sessions.
What to watch out for when doing HIIT?
High-intensity interval training is a program designed for people with a stable physical shape and professional athletes. People who do not train regularly should start with less taxing exercises and only after a long time take up HIIT training. Experts especially warn against this type of extreme exercise for people after heart attack, with cardiovascular diseases, circulation problems and overweight. If the athlete feels chest pain or runs out of breath while exercising, it is essential to extend the rest phase. Deciding to start HIIT workouts on your own can have negative health effects, so it is worth consulting your doctor or personal trainer.
In the implementation of HIIT, it may be helpful to use apps or heart rate monitors that will continuously monitor the athlete’s heart rate. When implementing interval exercises, you should also be careful about any kind of micro-injuries and bruises, because intense exercise, especially in professional athletes, can lead to serious injuries.
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