The Ultimate Cheat Sheet on HIIT

The Ultimate Cheat Sheet on HIIT

How to Incorporate HIIT, and HIIT Principles into Your Workout

By Siarra T. Mong

Doing cardio isn’t the most glamorous part of one’s workout routine, but with a few simple tips, you’ll be on your way to a more enjoyable, and effective HIIT workout.

Many active individuals still fuss about the cardio aspect of their workout routine. It is one of the most avoided aspects of working out. Most would rather do less taxing activities.

This is where HIIT comes in. HIIT helps get you leaner, and fitter while ensuring that you’re not working a moment longer than you have to at cardio.

HIIT changes the way you do your cardio by trading the typical steady state cardio workout done for a set amount of time for brisk, quick workout bursts with more frequent recovery brakes.

By cycling your energy output during a workout, you’re awakening a furnace within you that will cause your body to burn more calories during the workout, as well as for about one day after the initial workout.

There is evidence that this post workout burn is an extremely important aspect of weight loss because of this post-exercise afterburner. It has been shown that HIIT often trumps steady state cardio by far.

Despite the benefits of HIIT, it is still a form of exercise that requires respect, and conscious attention towards form. This will help prevent injuries, burnout, and overtraining.

As you embark on your HIIT cardio program, these ultimate HIIT hacks will support you on your journey, while reducing your chance of injury.

Ease in Gradually

If you haven’t been including cardio work into your fitness regimen previously, you will want to begin the transition to incorporate HIIT carefully. Get in the habit of doing basic steady state cardio exercise for 20 min, then slowly you can begin to incorporate breaks into your workout while increasing the intensity over a few weeks. By working with a trainer or in a group fitness class you can have a fitness professional help you with the transition.

In the beginning, many people find HIIT too challenging to complete a full HIIT session. That is okay. Your body will adapt to the intensity of HIIT if you begin to incorporate breaks of around 30 seconds into your workouts while increasing the intensity each time.

As you get fitter, and your health continues to improve you will find that it becomes easier to shorten the burst of high-intensity cardio you are doing while increasing the frequency of the breaks you are taking. The ultimate goal is to be performing everything, in short burst from the warm-up through the end of your workout.

It’s important to note that the intensity of your intervals can vary over the course of your workout. In order to receive the full benefit of HIIT, the main thing that needs to be focused on is keeping intervals short, and frequent. No other program helps build stamina, and cardiovascular endurance in such an efficient way.

As you stay consistent with your workouts, you will notice your ability to do more intervals with higher intensity.

Pick Exercises You Enjoy

If you are designing your own HIIT regimen, be wise to select the kinds of workouts you enjoy, that will increase your motivation to complete your workout.

Pick HIIT Exercises That…

That use large muscle clusters, like legs, so you can increase your heart rate in a swift manner.

Be sure that you are mindful of form, and in-tune with your body, so you are able to hit top speeds safely, and reduce your speed with equal efficiency.

If you are performing HIIT with professional supervision, they can help you select less traditional exercises, and narrow down what exactly you’ll enjoy the most. No matter the exercise, or if your intervals last 20 seconds or 60 seconds, you can find a fun mix of interval exercises to keep your workout interesting, and comprehensive.

Fuel Up for Results

When you decide to begin a workout regimen that is as intense as HIIT, you need to remember to eat well, and wholesomely. It is a major rookie mistake if you expect changes to occur when you’re not fueling your body properly.

A HIIT session isn’t an average cardio workout where you can get by on an empty stomach. This kind of workout needs to be treated with the same care as a weight lifting workout. A pre-workout supplement often is a crucial aspect of any intense workout so, it makes sense that the best approach is identical.

As you approach your training session, the best thing to fuel your body with is carbohydrates, and fast digesting proteins. This helps your performance by powering your muscles, and giving amino acids. If fat burning is your goal, you won’t need as many carbs as for weightlifting. So, around 10-20 grams will be enough for most people engaging in HIIT training.

Other factors like overall hydration, and the other active ingredients in your pre-workout (i.e. caffeine, beta-alanine, etc.) will enhance your performance as well as increase your fat burning potential.

Before beginning any supplementation, please, cross reference everything with your primary care physician to ensure it is right for you.HIIT can be a very challenging cardio style but you will achieve a more well-balanced body (especially if you are a bodybuilder) with this focus on gaining aerobic endurance, and increasing the fast twitch muscle fibers available. Incorporate any of these tips that you find helpful to see a greater result from your workouts.


Know your limits. If you’ve had an especially challenging workout the day before, and your body feels completely depleted you should honor that. Rest a day, and return to your usual workout the following day.

Alternatively, you certainly could swap out a HIIT workout for one of lower intensity if you still feel up to working out even though you’re not at 100%. If you listen to your body, use proper form, and remain grounded you will be able to return to your regular workouts much sooner.

If you are undertaking a HIIT session unsupervised in the beginning you shouldn’t try to push yourself to do more than one session per week. These sessions should be very short. If you need guidance while at home, a fitness program like, OPERATION SHREDDED, will become invaluable in your regimen.

Like with resistance training, your body will eventually acclimate to the intensity of HIIT. You’ll notice you’ll become more capable. As this happens, you can add more high-intensity intervals, lengthen the time that you do each high-intensity interval, and lengthen the workout.

Also, if you are weight training, it is suggested that you continue to be mindful of allowing enough time for recovery in order to prevent overtraining, and other injuries.

HIIT can be a very challenging cardio style but you will achieve a more well-balanced body (especially if you are a bodybuilder) with this focus on gaining aerobic endurance, and increasing the fast twitch muscle fibers available. Incorporate any of these tips that you find helpful to see a greater result from your workouts.

Group Workout Session

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