HIIT Clarification Help
New member here, and I've been reading some of the posts and there seems to be good amount of variation in HIIT methodologies.
First off, some basic info:
Bench Press: have not maxed out in a couple years, but on my last set I can do 225 lbs about twice so i'm guessing my max would be somewhere around 240 lbs.
I lift weights about 2-3 times a week and before i started HIIT used to do 30 min. of low/medium intensity cardio 3 times a week. Well, that really got me nowhere, and so I added 20 min. of cardio on the days that i lifted weights. That also didn't really yield acceptable results.
So I read about HIIT, but used the 8 week program suggested by this website:
To summarize what the site says, you first jog for 30 seconds, then sprint for 30 seconds and repeat this pattern. However, you don't do the 15 minute workout on your first day of HIIT; you gradually build up to it.
Your first workout is only 4 minutes long: 30 seconds jog/30 sec. sprint, then another 30 sec jog/30 sec sprint, until you hit 4 min. So you'd only be sprinting 4 times on your first session.
You add another minute (30 seconds jog + 30 seconds sprint) to your HIIT session at every other workout. So in effect, your workout days end up like this:
4 minutes/4 minutes/5 minutes/5 minutes/6 minutes/6 minutes..(and so on until)...14 minutes/14 minutes/15 minutes/15 minutes (for a total of 24 HIIT sessions). This was actually good for me because while I thought I was in good shape (since I did cardio 3 times a week), I was nearly dead after my first 4 minute HIIT session since I haven't sprinted since high school. I have so far completed 9 sessions, so currently i'm on my last 8 minute HIIT session before I add on another minute.
Other main instructions from the site are:
-Do not eat for 1 hour after your HIIT session.
-Cut back your daily calorie intake by about 200-300 calories under your maintenance calorie levels.
So I'm just wondering first off whether all the more knowledgeable members here find this routine acceptable. The site never mentioned a warm up or cool down period, so I never did them--is this something I should add? And if so, how long...a couple minutes? and is the warm up/cool down a walk or a jog? I'm mostly asking because I don't seem to have gotten many results yet. maybe i'm being impatient since I've completed only 9 of the 24 sessions, but I'm somewhat clueless on whether I should see a difference yet since this is the first time i've done HIIT. Any help is appreciated, thanks in advance.
What is your goal?
The main goal of HIIT is to get your body to naturally release more HGH (human growth hormone), which signals your body to burn fat and build muscle.
Most research papers I read found shorter sprint intervals and longer jog/walk intervals most effective. The easiest way I found to do that is to sprint (100% all out sprint) for 100 yards (or 70 yards up hill)(should take ~15 seconds on average, a little less on the first circuit a little more on the last circuit) then walk slowly back to the start and repeat 6-8 times. If you are truly sprinting at 100% effort you should feel a great tightness in your chest, like your lungs are about to burst after the 3rd or 4th circuit. You should be involving your entire body, arms pumping as hard as you can, etc. and feel a good pump in almost every muscle in your body. You only need to do this 2 times a week to get good results.
The goal is basically to lower my bodyfat percentage and gain more muscle definition ('cuts'). My body is on the endomorphic side, so gaining a decent amount of size has not been the main problem, but getting cut has.
Since i'm almost halfway through my program, I'll go ahead and finish it and evaluate hte end results. I may try this once i'm done, but of all the articles on hiit i've read you're the first to suggest walking instead of a jog/slow jog, as well as a much longer rest time.
Originally Posted by dswithers
Yes, these were wind sprints in the past, now HIIT! Everything old is new again!
First, you can get good results from this with only 2 sessions a week. Maximum benefits is achieved with 6-8 cycles in a session. Start out with 2 cycles and try to add another cycle ever week or two until you get to 6-8 cycles in a session. You can initially reduce the intensity by only running at 80%, but should eventually try to do 100% all out on every sprint. If you like running and feel like you need to do more you might also do one day a week of LSD (long slow distance) running, but I would recommend no more that 2 sessions a week of HIIT and one of LSD (along with 2-3 whole body weight workouts per week for maximum benefit).
Thank-You dswithers!! You answered my question quite clearly.
Originally Posted by dswithers
This week I'm taking off from my workouts...I feel like I need a rest.
But, on Monday, I will begin HIIT. I plan to do 2 sessions/week, along with my 3, 5-8km brisk walks. (That's 5 days of cardio.....hope this is not overdoing it!??)
I will also hit the weights, doing one bodypart/day....@3 exercises/bodypart--@20reps/exercise. This routine is completely new to me! I'm excited to see if I get results!! (The routines I just finished was designed for mass and strength...now it's time to cut!! ) I will keep you posted on how the HIIT goes! Again, thanks!
You are welcome. Good luck! Let me know if I can do anything else to help.
Folks: I'm a freelance writer -- formerly a Wall Street Journal reporter -- working on a piece for a national magazine about HIIT and stimulation of natural hGH via exercise. I'd be interested in talking to anyone here who follows an HIIT regimen specifically in order to reap the presumed hGH benefits. (I'd PM some of you, but this is a new account and PMs don't work for the first five days.)
If anyone is interested in talking about their HIIT workouts, please e-mail me at david.p.hamilton AT gmail.com. Many thanks in advance.
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