Utilizing this type of cardio can provide multiple benefits
- Improved cardio vascular strength
- Reduce fatigue
- Lower blood pressure
- Increase metabolism
- Decrease body fat
- Increase strength
- Increase stamina
What is H.I.I.T.?
High Intensity Interval Training is a cardiovascular training technique that incorporates specific heart rate zones during your cardio sessions.
You have three different zones or intervals:
Training Zones Purpose
zone 1) 65%-75% Builds aerobic base and aids in recovery
zone 2) 80%-85% Increases endurance and trains the anaerobic
zone 3) 86-90% Builds high-end work capacity
*People who have never worked out in their lives should start by performing 30 minutes of cardio, obtaining a heart rate of at least 55-60% max heart rate, and 3-5 times a week for 2-4 weeks prior to incorporating H.I.I.T into their training regimen. *
How do I perform H.I.I.T.?
(Stage I) 30-60 min. To ensure that your body recovers from the higher intensity workouts and that your body does not adapt quickly to this type of cardio you should alternate one recovery day and one the intensity at which you perform cardio. This leads us to steady state cardio or staying in one zone throughout the entire session. Preferably recovery days should be stay in Zone 1 for 30 minutes or more.
(Stage II) 30-45 min. Starting out you should only stay in zones one and two, for at least 4-6 weeks before adding zone three into your routine and progressing to Stage III. Begin your workout with a 5-10 minute warm-up where you will raise bring your heart rate (HR) between 55-60% of your maximum heart rate. After your warm-up increase your heart rate to Zone 2 for 5 minutes then recover in Zone 1 for one minute. Repeat this 3 times or as many times are necessary. Another way to make sure you are continuing to make optimum progress is to increase the time you spend in Zone 2. This will even become increasingly easier also, at this point you can decrease your recovery time in Zone 1. Ending your session with a 5-10 minute cool-down.
(Stage III) 20-30 min. I refer to this stage as the pyramid stage. Your routine on a stage III day should begin again with a warm-up and end with a cool-down of at lead 5 minutes. After the warm-up increase your HR to Zone 2. Maintain this for the same duration you will spend in zone 3, I would recommend starting with 1 minute. After you perform both Zone 2 and 3 reduce your HR back to Zone 2 for 3 minutes. Then recover in Zone 1 for 5 or more minutes. If you are feeling feisty after this you can repeat your pyramid or save it for next time and increase your time spent in the first portion of Zone 2 and 3.
As we progress through our cardio stages the total duration should become shorter. This is mostly because at the different HR zones our bodies us different fuel sources, some that take longer to restore than others. If you are pushing past the time frames recommended in these stages you need to increase the time spent in the higher zones or decrease your rest intervals. Last but not least Do not start counting your time in each zone until your HR is in each zone.
Stay fit and have fun