High-intensity interval training (HIIT) involves repetitions of intense exercise lasting 10-180 seconds, followed by rest or reduced exercise intensity. Studies have shown that HIIT increases fitness faster than traditional, moderate-intensity exercise. Its effects on weight loss are proven positive.
Few exercise techniques are more effective at improving fitness rapidly than HIIT. The four components of interval training include distance, repetition, intensity and rest.
1. Distance refers to either the distance or time of the exercise interval.
2. Repetition refers to the number of times repeating the exercise.
3. Intensity refers to the speed of performing the exercise.
4. Rest refers to the time spent recovering between exercises.
Researchers determined that six sessions of HIIT on a stationary bike increased muscle oxidative capacity by almost 50 percent. Increased muscle glycogen by 20 percent and cycle endurance capacity by 100 percent. Subjects made remarkable improvements by exercising only 15 minutes in two weeks. Workouts consisted of four to seven repetitions of HIIT (each rep consisted of 30 seconds at near-maximum effort) on a stationary bike. Follow up studies showed that practicing HIIT three times weekly for six weeks improved endurance and aerobic activity as well as training five times a week for 60 minutes for six weeks.