Blast Away Fat with These 5 Insane HIIT Workouts – Get Fit Fast!

Last Updated: December 27, 2023By

In the quest for a fitter, healthier body, the adage “work smarter, not harder” often holds true. However, in this case, working harder for less time is indeed the smarter approach. Contrary to the common belief that hours of tedious cardio are necessary for burning calories, there’s a faster, more effective way to achieve your fitness goals. Enter High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), a powerhouse for fat loss and calorie incineration. The good news is, you don’t have to wade through a sea of workout options; we’ve compiled the best HIIT workouts in this article.

In this article, we’ll cover:

  1. What is a HIIT workout?
  2. Is HIIT effective for weight loss and fat burning?
  3. The benefits of HIIT for fat loss.
  4. Different types of HIIT workouts.
  5. The best equipment for a fat-burning HIIT workout.
  6. Five exceptional fat-burning HIIT workouts.
  7. Why daily HIIT workouts may not be ideal.
  8. How often to incorporate HIIT into your fitness routine.
  9. Strategies for including HIIT in a comprehensive fitness program.

What is a HIIT Workout?

HIIT, an acronym for High-Intensity Interval Training, is a workout method that involves short bursts of intense exercise alternated with brief periods of rest or lower-intensity exercise. Unlike traditional notions of cardio, which often involve monotonous treadmill jogs, HIIT offers a world of exhilarating and diverse exercise options.

The beauty of HIIT lies in its versatility; it can be integrated with various forms of exercise, including resistance training, bodyweight workouts, and the use of cardio machines, battle ropes, kettlebells, and more. The best part is that you can blend these elements to create a personalized HIIT workout that aligns perfectly with your fitness goals.

It’s essential to distinguish between HIIT and interval training, which are often used interchangeably but are not the same. The key difference is intensity. Interval training involves varying exercise intensity levels but doesn’t consistently reach the high-intensity peaks that HIIT is famous for. The intensity of HIIT is what sets it apart, making it an ideal choice for burning substantial calories and shedding weight.

Is HIIT Good for Weight Loss?

When it comes to weight loss, HIIT reigns supreme over other forms of cardio training, including the longer, steady-state variety. It’s a common misconception that spending more time in the gym results in better outcomes, but HIIT proves this belief wrong.

HIIT’s effectiveness stems from its ability to elevate your heart rate and breathing to such a degree that your body burns calories vigorously to cope with the intensity. To reach the calorie-burning sweet spot, your heart rate should ideally surpass 80% of its maximum. This elevated heart rate pushes your body into its anaerobic system, where energy is produced without oxygen, primarily relying on stored glucose and creatine. This is in stark contrast to aerobic exercise, such as long, leisurely jogs, which rely on the aerobic system.

The real magic of HIIT happens after the workout concludes. HIIT triggers Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), wherein your body continues to burn calories at an elevated rate, even after the workout is done. In simpler terms, you’re burning more calories than usual, even after you’ve finished your HIIT session. The cherry on top: HIIT workouts are shorter in duration.

Five Benefits of HIIT

Let’s delve into five compelling reasons to incorporate HIIT into your fitness routine:

  1. HIIT Burns More Fat and Calories: HIIT workouts are shorter compared to traditional cardio sessions, yet they burn more calories. This can place you in a calorie deficit, ultimately leading to fat loss. Moreover, EPOC keeps your metabolism revved up long after the workout, promoting muscle gain and fat reduction.
  2. Time Efficiency: HIIT workouts can be as short as 10 minutes, making them perfect for busy individuals. Staying within the 30-35 minute range ensures you maintain intensity, which is crucial for optimal results.
  3. Builds Muscle: HIIT doesn’t just focus on fat burning; it also fosters muscle development. This is particularly evident when HIIT includes resistance and bodyweight exercises, helping you achieve the best of both worlds – fat loss and muscle gain.
  4. Reduces Heart Disease Risk: HIIT improves your VO2 max, which measures your body’s oxygen consumption during exercise. An efficient heart pumps more blood and oxygen, leading to increased muscle power and lower blood pressure. HIIT reduces the risk of heart disease, a leading cause of mortality.
  5. Versatility: HIIT can be performed anywhere, whether at the gym or in the comfort of your home. It offers a range of exercise options, from weights and cardio machines to bodyweight exercises.

Five Types of HIIT Training

If you need more reasons to embrace HIIT, consider its variety. There are several types of HIIT training to keep your workouts engaging and effective:

  1. Tabata: This is one of the most popular HIIT formats, consisting of 20 seconds of all-out exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest. You repeat this for four minutes, making one Tabata round. Alternate between two exercises, ensuring they are high-intensity. Combining upper and lower body exercises is a smart move.
  2. Sprinting: If you’re a fan of the treadmill, consider sprinting HIIT. Alternate between sprinting and active recovery intervals, with the intensity ensuring maximum benefits.
  3. Ladders: This style pairs two exercises, starting with one repetition each and increasing incrementally, resembling climbing a ladder. Short rest periods between ladder cycles keep intensity high.
  4. Complexes: Complexes involve a sequence of exercises performed in succession without setting down the equipment. You can use barbells, kettlebells, or dumbbells for strength training benefits.
  5. AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible): This method allows you to challenge yourself, aiming to complete as many rounds of a circuit as possible within a set time frame. The goal is to track your progress and beat your previous records.

Best Equipment for a Fat-Burning HIIT Workout

HIIT workouts are known for their versatility, allowing you to achieve your goals with various equipment. You can use:

  •  Weights: Kettlebells, dumbbells, and barbells.
  • Cardio Equipment: Treadmill, rowing machine, stair stepper, assault bike, ski erg, spin bike, assault bike, and jacobs ladder.
  • Functional Equipment: Medicine balls, jump ropes, battle ropes, speed ladders, and sled pushes.
  • Exercises: Squats, push-ups, pull-ups, mountain climbers, and burpees.

Five Best Fat-Burning HIIT Workouts

  1. Tabata HIIT Workout: This 20-minute session includes four rounds of exercises. Round one comprises push-ups and jump rope, round two features squats and jump rope, round three introduces mountain climbers and jump rope, and round four combines burpees with jump rope.
  2. AMRAP HIIT Workout: For 12 minutes, complete as many rounds as possible of 10 Calorie Row, 6 Kettlebell Swings, and 4 Hand Release Push-Ups. Rest briefly between rounds and aim for high intensity.
  3. HIIT Ladder Workout: A 10-minute ladder HIIT workout that alternates between medicine ball slams and dumbbell thrusters. The number of repetitions increases with each round, with minimal rest between rounds.
  4. 30 for 30 Circuit Workout: This 18-minute circuit comprises treadmill sprints, ab bicycles, and a farmer’s walk march, all performed with short rest periods.
  5. HIIT Barbell Complex: This 15-minute workout combines deadlifts, bent-over rows, hang cleans, squats and presses, and back lunges. All exercises are performed in succession, with a brief rest between rounds.

Why You Shouldn’t Do HIIT Every Day

As effective as HIIT is, it can be physically demanding, making it unwise to perform daily. Frequent HIIT sessions don’t allow your body sufficient time to recover. HIIT is an excellent tool when used in conjunction with your fitness program, but overdoing it can lead to overtraining and potential injury.

How Often Should You Do HIIT?

For beginners, one to two HIIT sessions per week is recommended. If you’re more experienced, you can increase this to up to three sessions per week. However, always monitor your body’s response and recovery. If you’re not progressing or if your other workouts are suffering, consider scaling back on HIIT sessions until your body adapts.

How to Include HIIT in a Fitness Program

Integrating HIIT into your fitness routine takes some experimentation. As a starting point, aim for one HIIT session and one Low-Intensity Steady-State (LISS) cardio session per week alongside your resistance training program. During your cardio session, focus on staying within the fat-burning heart rate zone.

For enhanced fat loss efforts, you can increase HIIT sessions to two per week, provided your body can handle it. Avoid scheduling HIIT before resistance training, as it can leave you too fatigued. Instead, place it after resistance training or on a separate day.

In conclusion, HIIT workouts offer a quick, efficient path to a fitter, healthier you. With endless variations and myriad benefits for weight loss, health, and muscle building, HIIT is a fitness essential. However, remember that results come from a combination of hard work and proper nutrition, so maintain a balanced diet and ensure you’re in a calorie deficit if weight loss is your primary goal. Supplements can complement your efforts, but there are no shortcuts on the path to fitness.

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