HIIT, or high intensity interval training, has been around for a few years now, and its fame is due to the great results it has achieved. It is a very fast way to burn calories and is very useful for those who are short on time.
Normally, HIIT is usually done by running, cycling, swimming, etc. but it can also be done by walking.
Characteristics of HIIT
A half hour of HIIT can burn as much as 300-400 kcal, although this will depend on factors such as age, gender and weight. In addition to the calorie burning benefits, it has also been seen that high intensity work, is very beneficial to our cardiovascular health.
On the other hand, it has been seen that it is able to reduce total cholesterol and the risk of type II diabetes.
HIIT is based on two fundamental principles:
- The intensity at which we work should be as high as possible.
- Respecting rest and work times
Regarding the second principle, the exercise:rest ratio should be between 1:2 and 1:4. That is, for every second that we work, we will have to keep a rest of between 2 and 4 seconds; the rest can be passive or active.
Although HIIT can be done at long intervals, short intervals can allow training at higher intensity, and that is why most HIIT workouts are usually based on exercises with 6 or 8 high intensity intervals of 30 seconds.
By changing intervals, we will get our heart beating at a faster rate and increase our resting oxygen consumption.
A good way to plan your HIIT routine is to combine days in which you train at high intensity with other days in which the intensity decreases or you rest completely. If we train HIIT every day, we run the risk that the intensity will not be high or that rest will be compromised.
On the other hand, doing HIIT every day could also compromise our strength training, so that, in the long run, we could lose a lot of muscle mass.
Why do HIIT while walking
HIIT, as we discussed above, is based on high-intensity exercise. Despite this, it can also be done walking, as not everyone is able to tolerate the intensity of cycling or swimming or, on the other hand, the impact on the joints of running.
Walking HIIT is not about walking at a normal pace for 30 seconds and resting for 1 minute, but we would have to walk for 30 seconds or 1 minute at full speed and, to make it even harder, instead of the exercise:rest ratio being 1:2, we can make it 1:1 or even 1:0.5, if we are able to tolerate it. This exercise:rest ratio would consist of walking one minute very fast and walking slowly for one minute or 30 seconds.
An example of HIIT walking could be the following:
- Walk 5 minutes at a normal pace as a warm-up
- Walk briskly for 1 minute
- Walk slowly for 30 seconds
- Repeat 10 times
Repeat from Monday to Friday and rest on weekends.