More stories

  • in

    HIIT Things Up With This Simple But Powerful Couple’s Workout

    This full-body high-intensity interval couple’s workout is perfect for pairs looking to torch kilos. Do this workout three days a week for the best results. All you’ll need is a skipping rope and an exercise mat.

    Complete as many reps as you can in 60 seconds, then rest for 20 seconds before moving on to the next exercise. Based on your level of fitness either complete one round (beginner), two to three rounds (intermediate) or four rounds (advanced).

    The HIIT Couple’s Workout

    1/ Skipping And Inchworm

    Your partner starts in a standing position, feet hip distance apart. They then place their hands on the floor and walk them forward until they’re in high plank.

    Your partner then walks their hands back to their feet and stands upright. Skip for 60 seconds while they complete the exercise.

    Make it harder:  Your partner adds a push-up before walking their hands back to their feet and standing upright. Even harder: your partner taps their hands to the opposite toes before walking back and standing upright.

    READ MORE: Feel Strong And Powerful With This Explosive 15-Minute Workout

    2/ Knee-Raises

    Sit facing your partner. Holding each other’s hands, lean back and straighten your legs. Bring your knees towards your chest while shifting your butt to the other side of your partner. Straighten your legs and repeat the process, shifting your legs back to the starting side.

    3/ Skipping And Inchworm

    Repeat exercise one of the couple’s workout, but this time you perform the inchworm while your partner skips. 

    4/ Reverse Lunge And Squat

    Stand facing your partner while holding each other’s right hands. Lunge backwards with your left leg. As you return to standing, drop your partner’s right hand, grab each other’s left hands and lunge backwards with your right leg. As you return to standing, grab both hands and then squat. Return

    to standing.

    Make it harder:  Swap the regular squat for a jump squat. Let go of your partner’s hands as you jump.

    READ MORE: Get Strong, Shapely Legs With This Do-Anywhere Leg Workout

    5/ Plank And Jump Over

    Start in plank, keeping your body straight and your core braced. Your partner places their hands on your upper back near your shoulders and jumps side to side over you.

    Make it harder: After jumping over, your partner does a half-burpee (no push-up) before jumping back. Even harder: try a chest-to-floor burpee.

    6/ Partner Leg Raises

    Lie down facing opposite directions with your heads next to each other. Interlock your arms, holding each other under the biceps. Keeping your core muscles tight and back on the ground, raise your legs until your toes touch at the top. Lower back down with control. Repeat. 

    READ MORE: Tone Up The Fun Way With This Strength And Cardio Dance Workout

    7/ Plank And High Knees 

    As your partner maintains a high plank, perform high knees, moving side to side between their legs moving. Swap positions halfway. 

    8/ Partner Roll-Ups

    Sit facing your partner. Roll backwards onto your upper-back with your knees tucked in. Roll forward, returning to a seated position and clap hands. Repeat. 

    Make it harder: As you roll forward, stand up and clap your hands. Sit down and begin again. Try to keep the movement fluid and continuous.

    Download your free 28-day Essential Guide To Self-Care by entering your details below. *Terms and Conditions Apply. More

  • in

    5 Benefits Of HIIT That Will Have You Literally Jumping For Joy During Your Next Workout

    Regular aerobic exercise has been shown to boost heart health, keep blood sugar levels in check, and maintain the health of our minds for the long haul. But just as there are a multitude of ways to work out and keep your body (and mind) healthy and strong, there are a trove of different approaches you can take to doing cardio. Enter: HIIT, or high-intensity interval training.
    READ MORE: Try This 25-Minute Total-Body HIIT Workout And Torch Calories Fast
    HIIT’s definition is a heckuva lot more simple than you might think, says Annie Mulgrew, founding instructor for CITYROW and Certified Personal Trainer. “High-intensity interval training is a form of interval training that alternates between short bursts of intense energy or activity followed by minimal rest, ideally until that person is unable to continue,” she explains.
    What Makes A HIIT Workout
    And, as Mulgrew notes, HIIT can be just about anything – from swimming to running to mountain climbers in your apartment to even weight training. The key, she says, is ensuring that the “short burst of energy” is at least 80 percent of your maximum effort (so, 8 on a scale of 10).
    “For HIIT to be effective, your ‘on’ intervals need to be all-out,” she says. Mulgrew also notes that your rest period shouldn’t exceed your active period (try, 20 seconds on and 10 seconds off). That rest period can contain no movement or moderate-effort movement – that part really isn’t important, she says. Those maximum-effort bursts are where the gains are made, Mulgrew reiterates.
    In Mulgrew’s CITYROW classes, for example, that on/off scheme translates to both metres rowed on the rowing machine, as well as resistance training off the rower. “You may find short rowing distance repeats or hip thrusters programmed as 40 seconds on and 20 seconds off,” she says.
    READ MORE: 5 Workouts To Help You Tone, Trim, and Build Muscle This Summer
    If you’re using weights for your HIIT workout, choose a weight that allows you to complete 10 to 20 reps repeatedly in your “on” periods, Mulgrew recommends. Beginners should aim for no more than 20 minutes of HIIT total. And if you’re a total HIIT nut, keep it no longer than 50 to 60 minutes (so the actual HIIT portion of the workout is around 30 minutes and the warm-up/cool-down roughly 20 minutes). “Going any longer than that would most likely mean you’re not able to maintain the intensity you need in order to achieve the benefits of a HIIT workout,” she says.
    Speaking of benefits, here are five major health perks associated with HIIT, plus, how to maximize your next interval workout.
    1. You’ll burn a boatload of calories – even after you’ve finished working out.
    Although aerobic exercise is a great tool in maintaining your heart health, as far as weight loss tactics go, that steady-state run isn’t the best calorie-burner. And while weight training is typically the most reliable weight loss tactic when it comes to fitness type (remember though, weight loss is achieved through a calorie deficit, which is most easily achieved through diet), if there is one form of cardio that blasts calories, it’s HIIT.
    One 2015 study (of healthy men) that compared calorie burn after 30 minutes of HIIT to other forms of steady-state exercise noted that HIIT burned 25 to 30 percent more calories. Other studies (also on men) have noted that HIIT propels your production of human growth hormone, or HGH, upwards of 450 percent in the 24 hours following a session, increasing overall calorie burn.
    2. They may help you lose fat quicker (especially around the midsection).
    Yep – a study in Journal of Diabetes Research confirmed this. The researchers divided obese, sedentary women into groups: those who partook in a HIIT program and those who did a moderate-intensity (but continuous energy expenditure) routine. The former group achieved similar body composition and aerobic capacity results in half the time.
    READ MORE: This 4-Week Bodyweight Challenge Is The Ultimate New Year Workout Plan
    3. It doesn’t require doing crazy workout moves.
    One major (assumed) drawback to HIIT, of course, is the notion you need to be flying, flailing, bounding, and sprinting (with a series of complicated tools, no less) in order to achieve a solid workout. But as Mulgrew points out, the hallmark of HIIT lies in exertion, not the modality, so pretty much any form of exercise fits—and that includes the simplest form of cardio there is: walking.
    In one Japanese study, for five months, 700 middle- and older-aged adults engaged in walking intervals (shorter bursts of speed interspersed with periods of rest). At the conclusion of the study, the individuals had noticeably improved endurance and strength.
    4. HIIT keeps your brain in shape.
    Studies have shown that regular HIIT exercise can boost your memory and make you sharper in everyday decision-making. One (potential) reason why, according to Mulgrew: “During a HIIT workout, you have to stay focused,” she explains.
    5. It’s the perfect exercise for that perpetually strapped-for-time person.
    And, what’s more, you don’t have to sweat for very long in order to see results. A 2006 study compared two groups of college men for two weeks: those who did stationary bicycling at a moderate pace for roughly an hour-and-a-half to two hours for three times a week, and those who did six 30-second all-out sprints with four minutes of recovery.
    Surprise, surprise: The HIIT-ers were just as fit (in terms of exercise performance and muscle growth) as those moderate-intensity exercisers by the end of the trial—with far less time invested.
    *This article was originally published on Women’s Health US

    READ MORE ON: Fitness Fitness Advice HIIT HIIT Workouts Total Body Workouts More