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Are you looking for a workout that gets your heart pumping fast, but you’re not in the mood for cardio? Then check out high intensity interval training, also referred to as HIIT.

HIIT is a fast-paced workout alternating between exercises that work different muscle groups. Its benefits are similar to those of both cardio and lifting. HIIT is truly the best of both worlds! Like cardio and any aerobic exercise, HIIT increases the heart rate and improves the flow of blood and oxygen in the body. Additionally, like lifting and any anaerobic exercise, HIIT builds muscle and helps you burn more calories. In fact, your body continues to burn more calories after your workout! How crazy is that?

Want to start incorporating HIIT workouts into your fitness regimen? Here are a few easy steps and tips for creating your own HIIT workout from home.

  1. Make sure you have a workout space clear of obstructions, such as a lawn or garage.
  2. Have a stopwatch available or download an interval timer on your phone. I use an app called “Interval Timer.” It’s easy to use and is FREE!
  3. Pick five to 10 exercises for your intervals. Make sure to pick exercises that work a variety of muscle groups to activate the whole body. A few options to start brainstorming are mountain climbers, push-ups, squats, planks, burpees, lunges and air punches.
  4. Set your work-to-rest ratio. I suggest 30 seconds of work to 30 seconds of rest.
  5. Determine how many sets you’ll do. I suggest 3 rounds (4 if you’re feeling strong). If you’re new to HIIT workouts, try 2 sets and then work your way up.
  6. Looking for some extra guidance before you start? Join a Student Rec & Wellness Center (SRWC) HIIT class! Visit asirecreation.org/calendar for more info.

With that, you’re ready to go! HIIT workouts can be challenging at first, so go at a pace that’s comfortable to you. And of course, don’t forget to drink water during and after your workout. Remember, you can do it!

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