Top Exercises to Use With HIIT

HIIT is high intensity interval training. By now, most of us will know what this term means and be familiar with how to go about using it. Simply put, it means that you are going to be alternating between periods of high intensity (normally at around 90-100% of your MHR) and periods of relatively low intensity and recovery (at around 70% of your MHR).

What this does, is to deplete your stores of glycogen and ATP, so that the only way your body can get the energy it needs to carry on with the low intensity training is to burn fat. You thus burn more fat both during the workouts and also continuously after the workout has finished! 

But HIIT doesn’t just have to mean running. Actually, there are a number of different exercises you can use in order to burn more fat and build more muscle and these work perfectly when combined with a HIIT workout.

Here are some great examples:

Kettlebell Swings

The kettlebell swing is an exercise that involves swinging a kettlebell up in the air and then letting it fall back down again. The momentum generated by this allows you to continuously exert yourself and ultimately, it’s a great way to provide a cardio challenge that burns fat while at the same time challenging and building up your muscles as well.

This is the perfect example of ‘concurrent training’ and will not only burn more fat but also tone and build muscle and generally help you to see amazing results.

Pull Ups

Pull ups are very well suited to HIIT, as long as you can perform enough of them with good technique. When you start to tire, you can always try to use a bit more momentum, at which point they become ‘kipping pull ups’ like those taught in CrossFit classes.

High Knees

If you can’t get outside to run, then another way to burn a lot of calories with a similar motion is to perform high knees. Stand on the spot, hold your hands up high and then run so that your knees hit your hands.

Tuck Jumps

Jump up in the air and then hug your knees in toward your chest each time you reach the apex of your jump.

Jack in the Box

Here, you squat down into a huddled position and then jump straight up in the air and kick your hands and arms out like a starfish. This not only challenges your legs to deliver a lot of explosive power but also involves your entire body in the movement!

Clapping Push Ups

HIIT works best when you involve your fast twitch muscle fiber. Fortunately, clapping push ups are a type of exercise that do exactly that thanks to their plyometric nature. These are much harder and more ballistic than regular press ups and can be used to burn through calories as a result.

Other CV

Of course running is just one example of a CV workout. Just as good is rowing, swimming, bike… Try them all and see what works best for you!

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The Best Diet and Supplement Regime to Combine With HIIT

So you just discovered HIIT? No doubt you’re loving just how easy it is to get a fat burning, calorie melting workout in now and you’re getting a kick out of pushing yourself so hard.

But while you’re probably feeling great, you should know that fat loss and muscle gain do not happen in the gym or on the track. Rather, they happen in the kitchen. If you really want to make the very most of HIIT, the you should combine it with the right diet… hiit

The Basics – Calories In, Calories Out

The great thing about HIIT is that it is a form of MetCon – metabolic conditioning. That is to say that it doesn’t just burn calories while you’re training, it also increases your calorie burn at rest by making your cells more efficient at burning through fat stores and sugars. Thus, even when you’re resting, you’re going to lose more weight.

But you still need to try and calculate this as much as you can and to do that, you need to figure out a rough ‘AMR’ – the total number of calories you burn in a day (this stands for ‘Active Metabolic Rate’). Likewise, you should track the calories you’re taking in with an app like MyFitnessPal and what this will then allow you to do, is to make sure you are consuming fewer calories than you are burning off. If you do this, then you should lose weight – and especially with the metabolic benefits.

Carb Backloading

Some people will tell you that it is important to reduce carbs – at least the simple kind. That’s because carbs spike the blood sugar and your body responds by producing insulin, absorbing that sugar and then storing it as fat.

If you’re concerned about this, you can try something called ‘carb backloading’. Here, you simply consume carbs only immediately following a workout. This wouldn’t work with aerobic training but HIIT will deplete the glycogen stores in your muscles. Thus, the priority of your body will become refuelling those glycogen stores, meaning that you’ll be less likely to store the excess energy as fat!

This way, you can still enjoy your carbs but without the guilt!

Supplements

One supplement that makes a lot of sense in conjunction with a HIIT workout program is creatine. That’s because creatine allows you to recycle ATP in your system, which in turn means you can rely on the ATP-CP energy system just a little longer. This in turn means that you can go all out for a second or so more when performing the high intensity portion of your workouts. That’s a big difference and it will result in better results. All that and creatine has also been shown to add muscle (by increasing water retention in the muscles) and to boost IQ!

Meanwhile, you can also try other supplements that will enhance your cellular energy. Popular choices include l-carnitine, CoQ10 and omega 3.

You don’t need any supplements, but adding a little l-carnitine and creatine can only help you see results faster!

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How Your Body Uses Energy As You Continue to Train

When you first start working out, your body will go through a number of changes. These changes are designed to provide you with more energy and your ability to recruit that energy as and when you need it, is one of the biggest factors in determining how fit you are and how well you’re able to train. It’s also what controls the amount of fat you’re able to lose in any given amount of time!

Let’s see how this works and what you can do to improve it… body

The ATP-CP System

Essentially, the body finds its energy using three separate systems and it goes through these three systems in order.

When you first start exercising, you will begin using what is known as the ‘ATP-CP’ system. This stands for adenosine triphosphate creatine phosphate system. Catchy!

Adenosine triphosphate is the most fundamental form of energy known to biology. This is what glucose must be broken down into in order to be used by the body and a fair amount of it exists inside your muscles at all times. As soon as you start exercising, you utilize that ATP and this provides up to a couple of seconds of power. CP – creatine phosphate – allows us to recycle ATP and is also stored in the muscles ready to use.

The ATP-CP system is the most energy efficient and provides us with energy without making us gasp or feel unwell.

The Glycogen Lactic Acid System

The glycogen lactic acid system works by using glycogen stored in the muscles. This is the second most energy efficient source but has the unwanted side effect of producing lactate and other metabolites as a by-product. Lactate makes us feel unwell if we keep pushing ourselves and correlates with other metabolites that can make the muscle feel like it’s burning.

We can usually use this system of energy for a couple of minutes before the lactate becomes too much or the burn becomes too much. It is possible to improve your tolerance to this however, with training.

The Aerobic System

Finally, we switch to the aerobic system. This is the energy system most of us are most familiar with and it works by utilizing oxygen in the blood in order to burn fat stores for energy. This is why it makes us start breathing more heavily and increases our heart rate.

The aerobic system is the least energy efficient and it takes time for the energy to be delivered. Thus we are forced to slow down once we reach this state. However, it is also the type of energy system that we are able to sustain the longest. In fact, we can continue with this kind of exercise indefinitely or until we collapse from a complete lack of body fat!

HIIT

HIIT (high intensity interval training) is so effective because it involves switching from the first two types of energy (anaerobic energy) to the last kind. This enables you to deplete both your glycogen and your fat stores and thus does both more effectively.

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How to Design a MetCon Circuit for Maximum Weight Loss and Muscle Building

If you take a look on YouTube for a workout, you’ll find that they often come in the form of ‘ten-minute whole body routines’ and the like. These are designed as a circuit and they usually incorporate a range of exercises such as squats, clapping press ups, bicep curls and tuck jumps.

In theory, this type of workout can be highly beneficial for both building muscle and burning fat. That’s because it comes very close to mimicking a HIIT workout – encouraging short bursts of high intensity, followed by short resting periods. At the same time, the lack of rest increases the intensity and potentially allows for some real muscle damage and metabolic stress in a short amount of time. circuit

But not all of these workouts are made equal and some of them simply don’t work all that well. Be careful when finding workouts online!

Read on and we’ll see how to design a workout that does work, that uses these principles.

How to Burn Fat With a Circuit

Workouts that are designed to use high intensity intervals combined with resistance training and calisthenics are called ‘metcon’. This stands for ‘metabolic conditioning’ and should in theory improve your metabolism.

If you want to create a workout that falls into this category though, then you need to make sure that you are actually fulfilling the criteria of ‘metabolic conditioning’. This means that you need to be reaching 90-100% of your maximum heartrate during your exercise. You’re not going to do that with lunges and sit-ups, so make sure you include something like tuck jumps, like clapping press ups or like high knees.

The other thing to keep in mind though, is that you can’t maintain 90-100% MHR for more than a minute in most cases. Thus it’s important to provide breaks in your workout routine, so that some stations can be considered ‘active recovery’. An example might be to follow something like clapping press ups with something like plank.

More Tips

Another tip is to make sure that your circuit targets as many muscle groups as possible. The more different muscle you involve in your routines, the more you will stimulate the body to produce growth hormone and testosterone, which will lead to more muscle growth, even while you’re sleeping.

Another thing to do is to try and alternate the order that you hit each muscle group in so that you are switching from upper body to legs. This means that the body will have to direct blood from your arms down to your legs and back again – getting your heart to work harder and ultimately burning more calories as a result.

Finally, try to avoid adding any complex multi-joint exercises that are prone to injury at a point in the routine where you’re likely to be tired. If you’re going to perform dead-lifts, then make sure that you do so at the start of the workout before you are exhausted. Doing dead-lifts tired is a quick way to snap your back!

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Concurrent Training for Even Greater Fat Loss

What’s the very best way to lose weight? Most people now agree that it probably has something to do with HIIT – High Intensity Interval Training. This is a training format that challenges you to divide your time spent in the gym between high intensity bursts of sprinting or otherwise exerting yourself at 100% MHR and periods of active recovery at around 70%.

But what if you could do something to make this HIIT method even more impressive? How can you get even greater results from what is already a very effectual tool? training

The answer is to use concurrent training…

What is Concurrent Training?

Simply, concurrent training is a form of training that combines cardio and resistance into one exercise. This is why it can also sometimes be referred to as ‘resistance cardio’. The idea is then that you are going to perform some kind of rapid movement but while doing it, you will be pushing or pulling against some kind of weight or resistance.

An obvious example of this would be to ride a stationary bike but to increase the resistance setting to ten so that you have to use more strength in your muscles to turn the pedals.

Other examples of concurrent training include certain forms of calisthenics – like clapping push ups or push ups – as well as boxing, swimming, rowing on a heavy setting or the kettlebell swing. The kettlebell swing is of particular interest here because it allows you to lift quiet a heavy weight in a manner that is conducive to long sequences of exertion.

Why it Matters

So why is concurrent training so important? What’s exciting about it?

There are a couple of things that make this such a great too. The first is that by combining resistance and cardio in one routine, you are actually significantly increasing the challenge. You’ll find it harder to move your limbs due to the resistance and thus you’ll need more fast twitch muscle fiber. This requires more energy and so you’ll burn more calories than performing the same movements without the resistance.

Better yet though, when you perform concurrent training, you’ll be protecting your muscle from breakdown. HIIT does this to an extent already but when you include resistance work, you effectively send a strong signal to the body that you need the muscle and it’s not just deadweight slowing you down.

In biological terms, you will be breaking down muscles and flooding them with metabolites, both of which are signals that encourage growth. You’ll produce more growth hormone and more testosterone and these both trigger growth and fat loss.

Better yet, building muscle is great for weight loss goals. That’s because muscle makes you look more toned and honed and is often the quicker way to get the physique you want. Moreover, muscle is metabolically active meaning that you burn more calories by simply having muscle. If you add muscle work into your routine, you’ll burn more fat even when you’re asleep!

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