How Long Should A HIIT Workout Be?
Whether you are a newbie to working out or you have been working out forever, you have probably heard of HIIT.
High-Intensity Interval Training, aka HIIT, is an extremely popular type of workout. It is super effective in helping you reach your fitness goals BUT, there can be some confusion about how these HIIT workouts should actually last for.
So lets clear up some common questions!
What exactly is HIIT?
It is a workout or fitness style that consists of short intervals of high-intensity cardio followed by a rest period and because your body works at such a high intensity, your heart rate increases which enables you to burn calories faster. And as a bonus, if you are truly reaching the desired intensity, the increased fat-burning potential can continue even after you are done.
In a nutshell it basically means you will be changing between tough work periods and rest periods.
How long should HIIT workouts be?
Usually, a HIIT session should be done within 15-20 minutes, this excludes your warm up and cool down.
The whole point of high-intensity training is to raise your heart rate into a zone that is close to that of your maximum heart rate during these workouts. Your target heart rate zone is a personal guideline and getting close to your maximum heart rate can be something to work towards slowly. Never over do it!
If you are staring out you may want to use a 1:2 ratio, training all-out for 60 seconds and then resting for twice as long. People who have been doing HIIT for longer may transition to a 1:1 ratio; that is, training at high intensity for 60 seconds and resting for 60 seconds before repeating.
As you progress with your HIIT training, you can choose to begin shortening the ‘work’ periods a little — for example, going from 60 seconds to 45 seconds. Shorter work periods means you can reach a higher intensity because you don’t have to sustain the work period for as long.
How important are rest periods during a HIIT workout?
The main focus of HIIT workouts are the intensity. You should be giving your everything and really increasing your heart rate during the work period, then taking a break. You will find the harder you work the more you appreciate the rest periods.
The rest periods are also when your body prepares itself for the next work period, so don’t skip them!
How often should you do a HIIT workout?
Now that you are into your HIIT training and enjoying every second, you tempted to increase the number of workouts you’re doing, especially because it is such a short workout. But before you start doing HIIT everyday, remember that your body needs time to recover, especially after such a hectic workout.
Don’t over train! You need to rest also or you might end up hurting yourself.
Remember there is only one of you, so look after yourself!