Cardiovascular workout new kid, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), boasts big benefits for folks that try it. HIIT refers to any workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and longer periods of less extreme effort. If you’re looking to improve your heart health or your health in general, here’s what you need to know about HIIT and its numerous benefits.
Are you getting enough heart-pumping activity? "Cardiovascular exercise is beneficial to the body for a wide variety of reasons," says Dr. Chirag Shah, D.C., Chiropractic Director of Chiro One Wellness Center of Burr Ridge. "It supplies oxygen to the rest of your cells and tissues, helps maintain an ideal weight and can help regulate cholesterol levels." Cardiovascular workouts assist your body to maintain manageable levels of stress throughout the day as well.
How HIIT helps
The body can adapt to repetitive activities, causing exercise to be less challenging or beneficial. "This is where HIIT comes in to play," says Dr. Chirag. "I personally recommend this type of workout in lieu of constantly running on a treadmill or outside over the same pace for a prolonged duration."
Dr. Chirag recommends shocking your body by varying your workouts and challenging it with new movements and different paces. "This keeps the heart guessing," Dr. Chirag says. "Recent studies show that by doing this, the heart actually becomes stronger, your workouts are less taxing on your joints and end up being much more efficient."
HIIT workouts are super beneficial to your body, but they can also fit well within your lifestyle and goals. The efficiency of HIIT workouts allows you to exercise for shorter periods and still reach your fitness objectives. These workouts also keep your metabolism working hard all day long. The intense bursts of maximum effort put your body into repair mode, resulting in more fat burned throughout the day. Experts recommend 15-minute sessions only two to three times per week. If you’re time-crunched or working toward weight loss, HIIT might be a great fit for you.
Like every workout, make sure HIIT works best for your body and suits your ideal goals and needs. And before you take on HIIT or any other fitness regimen, discuss it with your physician.