Cardio fiends, welcome to an explosive new world.
It’s called HIIT—or High Intensity Interval Training—and if you’re unaware (you really shouldn’t be at this point), it’s about to rock your naive little definition of cardio. We’ve already covered the magical, body-transforming powers of HIIT in-depth over here. Read that first, especially if you’re new.
But if you need a quick little refresher course, here’s the rundown of its uber-potent benefits.
- HIIT incinerates body fat. And unlike distance endurance cardio, it effectively preserves muscle tissue.
- AFTERBURN. HIIT elevates metabolism, increases the rate of fat burn (i.e. fat oxidation), and boosts O2 consumption for up to 48 hours post-workout(otherwise known as EPOC). Your body burns MORE without doing anything extra.
- It’s a significantly FASTER, more efficient form of cardio. That means less time maniacally glued to a treadmill.
- Improves VO2 max, which is the predominant marker of cardiovascular fitness. HIIT grooms the body to excel at endurance running, without ever running distance during the training phase.
- Depending on the mode, it can help build lower body muscle tone and stamina. Both of those are critical for sports and ultra-events like marathons, Spartan Races, and Tough Mudders.
- HIIT develops burst, power, and explosiveness.
- Helps nearly all markers of health, including insulin sensitivity and blood pressure.
And if that bulletin board isn’t enough to convince you, here’s a single fact that’ll suck you in immediately. Interval training produces more than TWICE the fat loss in HALF the time.
In one study that spanned 6 weeks, three 27-minute HIIT workouts per week reduced body fat by an average of 12.4%. Over the same period, anyone who was unlucky enough to do 60 minutes of steady state cardio, 3x per week, only lost a meager 5.8% body fat.
Point is — you can build and maintain a lean, ripped-up, ab-happy physique without indulging mind-numbing distance cardio. You just need to a little HIIT in your life; for as little as 15 minutes per session, a few times per week. When it comes to zapping stubborn body fat and dipping into the single digits (or mid-teens for women), there’s nothing more effective.
It’s that potent, sans hyperbole.
Ready to get moving? We’ve lined up killer, HIIT cardio cycle workouts to slash body fat and recompose your body from the inside out. Each protocol is designed to be short, brutally intense, and pushed to the max — it doesn’t work otherwise — but you’ll be done before your mind can even catch up with your body. And if you’re bored or underwhelmed, you’re doing it wrong. PUSH HARDER.
References, Notes, Links