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Last Updated on January 21, 2021

8 Promising Benefits of HIIT Workout That Will Make You Want To Start Right Now!

8 Promising Benefits of HIIT Workout That Will Make You Want To Start Right Now!

We all know the great importance of exercise, and sure, each of us, in our own way try to do as much as we can. Yet, this can be incredibly difficult. If you work full time, or are generally very busy, getting the gym hours in that we feel is necessary can feel like an impossible task.

Even if you want to go for a run, you might think that you would need to run for at least an hour to make any real change. We might feel resigned to our current state or shape, one seemingly enforced by our schedule.

This might well be the case, however thanks to the exercise system HIIT (high intensity interval training) you can get a fantastic workout in very little time.

As its name suggests, HIIT relies on short bouts of high intensity exercise, broken up by moments of rest and recovery. The exercise sequences are repeated for about 20-30 minutes.[1]

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HIIT isn’t just useful for those short of time, HIIT workouts are one of the best forms of cardiovascular exercise that you can do, something supported by significant research.[2]

In addition there are a great, and surprising range of other benefits which show that high intensity interval training is the way to go for those on the clock.

8 Amazing Benefits of HIIT- From Head to Toe, from Physical to Mental!

    Burn Fat Even When You Stop Training

    One of the most popular reasons people choose HIIT is that, through the training, you burn fat even when your training has stopped.

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    This is due to Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), after a HIIT workout your oxygen consumption is increased in such a way that you burn fat 9x faster. In addition, thanks to the way HIIT workouts boost your metabolism, you can burn up to 50% more fat than a regular steady-state cardio workout, even though steady-state workouts are maintained for much longer periods of time.[3]

    Build More Muscle and Maintain Muscle Mass Better!

    At the same time HIIT workouts stimulate the burning and using up of fat and calories, HIIT workouts also produce muscle building anabolic hormones. As such it can be a very effective way of developing lean muscle.

    Surprisingly, HIIT workouts are actually better at building and maintaining muscle mass, while losing fat than regular sustained steady-state workouts as prolonged exercise can result in muscle being burned up and used by the body as fuel.[4]

    It Helps Improve Your Blood Circulations and Fight Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms

    Studies have shown that intense, interval based training forms, like HIIT help blood flow and blood vessel dilation.[5] The effects were particularly notable with those suffering with type 2 diabetes, where blood flow improvements were noticed within an our or two of exercising. Researchers have noticed that those who do HIIT workouts have better managed glucose levels than both those that do not, and even those who exercise with normal steady-state workouts.

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    Just Jump and sprint! You Don’t Need Any Equipment!

    When you go into a gym for the first time, the first thing you notice is all the strange machines and devices. Some are so complicated that you need to be trained on how to use. Almost all are so expensive that that it is impossible to do the same workouts when at home or away from the gym. A great number of workouts are built around some of these machines.

    Though some HIIT routines do use things like treadmills, most HIIT workouts rely only on the body alone. Some of the most popular HIIT workouts are simple jumping jacks and sprints. So, unlike the gym, all you need is a little bit of space.

    Strengthen your cardiovascular activity and boost your endurance

    By pushing your heart rate and oxygen consumption during HIIT workouts. You’ll both strengthen and improve your heart and cardiovascular activity and oxygen intake. Specifically, you will increase your body’s VO2 Max, which is the amount of oxygen a person can use per kg of body weight. As such your overall stamina and ability to workout. Over time you will notice that you will need less and less recovery time.

    It Helps Prevent aging and You Will Live Longer!

    Resent research by the Mayo Clinic has suggested that HIIT workouts can reverse signs of cellular aging.[6] This occurs through improving the body’s production and synthesis of proteins which in turn can help fight signs of aging. In addition, HIIT workouts have been shown to combat muscle degradation in age.

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    Ease the difficulties and strains of Parkinson’s!

    Researchers in the University of Alabama have released a study suggesting that HIIT can improve the motor functions, quality of life, and mood of Parkinson’s sufferers.[7] This could be revolutionary if researched further, as Parkinsons as a condition specifically attacks the motor functions of the human body. The researchers saw improvements in patients muscle control, balance, and sense of well being compared to Parkinson’s suffers of similar ages who had not undertaken high intensity training.

    You Constantly Push Yourself and You Expand Your Limits Eventually!

    For many, this might be a turn off. However I have often felt that there is a strange, but genuine pleasure in pushing yourself physically and coming out the other side. As you’d imagine high intensity training, is…well…intense. Each time you exercise with an HIIT workout, you are pushing yourself to your physical limit, however, of course, for only a few moments at a time. Because of this your workouts are never dull and you will see real improvements in your health, and stamina in very little time.

    Don’t forget to do it step by step

    As with any change in your exercise regime, its important to consult your doctor and hear their opinion. This is especially important if you’ve never done any high intensity training before.

    Reference

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    Arthur Peirce

    Lifestyle Writer

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    Last Updated on February 24, 2021

    Hit a Weight Loss Plateau? Here’s How To Break Through It

    Hit a Weight Loss Plateau? Here’s How To Break Through It

    I’ve done plenty of short and long diets in my life, successful and not-so-successful ones. What do all of these attempts have in common? In every single one of those endeavors, I’ve hit a weight loss plateau after a certain period of time. How I reacted to that weight loss plateau determined if the diet was turning out to be fruit-bearing or not.

    In this article, you will learn how to overcome these inevitable setbacks on your journey and how to come back stronger than before.

    Why You Hit a Weight Loss Plateau

    Our bodies do not like to give away our energy storage.

    It’s very unlikely that we had an ancestor that was happily exhausting himself in an environment where food resources were scarce. Instead, our hunter and gatherer predecessors evolved to shun energy loss.

    That’s why the first few minutes of exercising are always a pain, even for the most advanced of athletes. David Goggins, Ex-Navy-Seal and finisher of multiple continuous 100-mile races, said this about running:

    “I hate to run.” -David Goggins, experienced, ultra endurance runner and probably the toughest man alive

    What Mr. Goggins is telling us with that thorough statement is that excess energy usage for no apparent survival-related gain produces negative feelings for just about anyone.

    The point is that hitting a plateau is normal. Our genomes have evolved to store energy instead of being energy wasters, and that’s a good thing.

    However, first we have to find out if we’re truly hitting a plateau or our mind is tricking us into believing so.

    Is It Really a Weight Loss Plateau?

    In the fitness center I manage, a young and ambitious young man once complained to me about his lack of weight loss results.

    After 2 months of being on a strict and sustainable diet, his scale still showed him a rather small decline of 4 pounds. He strictly followed his trainers’ advice yet couldn’t see the results he hoped for. He felt cheated and even asked for a refund.

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    Promptly, I inquired if the scale was the only way he measured his progress, and it was. This means he wasn’t taking into account pounds gained by building muscle.

    It turned out that the frequent gym-goer did, in fact, see results. He was extremely satisfied with the view in the mirror and even got compliments from his friends and family. However, he based the results of his success solely on the reduction of his body weight, which means he based his happiness on an irrelevant number.

    This is not the way to do it, and it certainly isn’t the way to know if you’re hitting a weight loss plateau.

    When starting a diet, try to get at least 2 variables that you can measure. For example:

    1. Your body weight, and before and after pictures.
    2. Before and after pictures, and the circumferences of your major body parts (upper arms, thighs, waist, etc.)

    This way, you can objectively decide if you’re truly hitting a plateau or if your mind is simply playing tricks on you.

    How to Break Through a Weight Loss Plateau

    Once you’ve determined that you’ve indeed hit a plateau, here are a couple steps that you can follow to break through:

    1. Take a Look at Your Goals

    “If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.” -Seneca

    This is an old saying, yet so massively true in our day and age. You have to know where you’re going to be on the right path. That’s why it’s crucial that you’ve written down your goals before committing to this weight-loss journey.

    If not, this is the time to do it. Reassess what you’re trying to reach and why. Humans are logical creatures, and we need a reason to do something in order to stay motivated.

    Action:

    Take at least 10 minutes out of your day, sit in a quite corner with a pen and paper, and get this step sorted. This the easiest step and probably the one that will create a big change in your life.

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    2. Readjust Your Habits

    If we’re following a diet long enough, we often let our habits slip without even noticing it. We unconsciously increase the portion size, decrease our effort in the gym, and buy unhealthier foods.

    Just recently, I did a diet for a short vacation to Italy and hit a weight loss plateau. I struggled to find the reason until I noticed that I started to eat two reasonably-sized breakfasts every morning, instead of the usual one. One before the morning workout and one after.

    This is quite common on a diet. We’re deluding ourselves and then rationalizing our behavior. “It’s just a one-time thing,” we say, or “I’ve earned that donut; it’s the way I treat myself.”

    As weight loss is going against our ingrained nature, our brains are great at leading us subtly yet surely off-path. That’s why we need to reassess our goals, to now readjust our habits accordingly.

    Action:

    Take a picture of all the meals and beverages that you put in your body during the day. Are these aligned with your goals? Are you happy with what you put in your body?

    Be honest with yourself, because our goals are not our goals if we don’t back them up with the right actions.

    3. Be Urgently Patient

    Once you’ve readjusted your nutrition and workout habits, the chances are pretty high that you’ve overcome the weight loss plateau already.

    Now is the time to be urgently patient. This is a term Gary Vaynerchuk[1] uses when speaking of the business world. It means that, on the bigger scale, you should be patient, and on the smaller, minute-to-minute scale, you should act urgently.

    Action:

    Follow the proven steps noted above for at least 2 weeks, and give it your best effort. If you’ve seen a difference, go to step 1, and reassess your habits and goals. If you haven’t seen a difference, proceed to step 4.

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    4. Add in Caffeine

    There are numerous studies on green tea and its effectiveness on weight loss and health.

    While green tea is an antioxidant-rich beverage that has been shown to slow down aging, it can also decrease your satiety and increase your overall weight loss.[2]

    Implement 2 cups of green tea every single day to break through the plateau.

    5. Eat This High-Calorie Food

    Nuts contain a lot of calories, yet they’ve been shown to increase your weight loss by raising your calorie expenditure at the same time.

    In fact, nuts, in addition to their dietary fiber, have been shown to be negatively correlated with weight gain over time.[3]

    Add a handful of nuts to your breakfast to increase your satiety over the day.

    6. Get Your Heart Working

    Burning more calories by upping your work-load and re-energizing your exercise routine is one of the easiest ways to break through a weight loss plateau, but it’s also one of the most difficult.

    In addition to breaking through weight-loss plateaus, this can help you have more energy and decrease your recovery time. I had to learn this the hard way.

    Add 30 minutes of low-intensity cardio twice a week to boost your weight loss. To do this, check out Lifehack’s Simple Cardio Home Workout Plan to get closer to your weight loss goal and increase the number of calories you burn each day.

    7. Extra Accountability Leads to Extra Progress

    We’re social creatures, and a lot of the things that we do on a daily basis is to increase our reputation in the tribe that we live in.

    Use this fact to your advantage. One of the easiest actions to exploit this natural human tendency is to post your progress pictures on Facebook or in a thread you have with family and friends.

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    To put your accountability on steroids, train with a friend or hire a personal trainer for 3 months to kick-start your weight loss success.

    8. Decrease Obesity-Causing Foods

    Animal foods have been shown to be correlated with weight gain. But is it because vegetarians eat more plants, or less meat?

    There was a study in 2012, observing over 3900 men and women, that found the group with increased meat consumption experienced more weight gain, even when both groups were controlled for fruit consumption, vegetable consumption, grain consumption, physical activity, and even calorie intake.[4]

    Chicken was the meat most closely related with obesity. Decrease your intake of animal foods by substituting 3 chicken-based-meals per week with beans or legumes.

    9. Take the Stairs

    If you truly want to keep the weight off long-term and avoid the Yo-Yo effect, you need to adjust your habits.

    Implement basic, physical activity in your day. You don’t need to run a marathon in the morning, but try to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk to the supermarket instead of using your car.

    Little changes go a long way, so try it out by avoiding the elevator for the next 7-days.

    Summing It up

    Hitting a weight-loss plateau is normal when doing a diet to get into the best shape of your life. The question is just how you react to these setbacks along your journey.

    We have to first make sure that we truly hit a weight-loss plateau and our mind is not playing tricks on us. To do that, we have to reassess our goals and readjust our habits accordingly. Then, we can implement specific strategies to break through and move forward with our goals.

    More on Boosting Weight Loss

    Featured photo credit: Sam Moqadam via unsplash.com

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