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HIIT Workout: High Intensity Interval Training for Best Results

Our gym closes at 4pm on Saturdays.  I wish they closed at 6, because it’s often hard to get away from busy Saturday things to get there in time to workout before they close.

This past Saturday in fact, while I had planned to arrive there around 3pm for a good hour workout to round out the week, instead I drove up at 3:30.

It would have been so easy to just go on and do my other errands instead of working out.  I mean why bother getting sweaty for just 30 minutes, right?

And, that’s what most people do.  They give in, give up, and make excuses. “It’s too late.”  “Not enough time.” “By the time I get warmed up, it will be time to stop.”

“No time”, is the most common excuse for not exercising.

So, what do you do?

I changed my mindset and changed my story when I didn’t like ANY of the excuses running through my head. I just couldn’t imagine saying any of those excuses to my family as to why I didn’t end up working out.

 “Excuses allow us to fool ourselves, and if we use them enough, we lose ourselves.” ~LeAura Alderson

HIIT principles can also be applied to Weight Circuits.

It’s all about mindset. So, whenever you’ve planned on working out, but you’re running behind and by the time you get to the gym, you will have only 30 minutes to work out (or even if it’s less)… just go for it!  Whether it’s the gym, or at home, just do it!

You will never regret the workout you did… just the ones you didn’t do.

But here’s the great thing:  you can actually achieve more fitness results in 30 minutes than you can in one hour!!  Hard to believe isn’t it?  In fact, it tends to defy common sense. But it’s true.

Chances are that you’ve heard of high intensity interval training—or HIIT—by now.  Science reveals that HIIT, is more effective than an hour of “steady state” exercise, such as aerobics, cardio machines, or even combination classes with weights.1)"#footnote_plugin_tooltip_2").tooltip({ tip: "#footnote_plugin_tooltip_text_2", tipClass: "footnote_tooltip", effect: "fade", fadeOutSpeed: 100, predelay: 400, position: "top right", relative: true, offset: [10, 10] });3)" target="_blank" rel="noopener">

Another name and style of High Intensity Interval Training is known as Tabata, or the Tabata Method. The simple how to on Tabata is 4 minutes of 8 cycles of intense exercise, with 20 seconds going all out, 10 seconds recover, 20 seconds going all out, 10 seconds recovery over four minutes, for 8 complete HIIT sets.

There’s even a free online Tabata Timer to make it super simple to track your sprints.

But, when we understand the reason, it makes sense, because here’s what happens: in a 60 minute exercise class, do you play ALL OUT, or, do you get into a groove and just move, in rhythm to the music, for example?

If you’re a runner, do you—could you even—run ALL OUT for 60 minutes?  No way!  Of course not.  No one could, not even the top athletes of the world, because even they can only go ALL OUT for about 60 seconds max.  Now their “all out” would leave us in the dust, (maybe even their ‘steady state cardio), but the point is we each have our own “all out”, and…this is key for exercise and for life.

You have your own “all out”. HIIT it!

Be intense. Be focused. Be the best you.


Most of us pull back before we get there…pull back as soon as we get winded, or a bit too tired, whether in exercise, relationships, work… life in general. Many of us have bought into the meme of “don’t work too hard.”  I wonder where that started?  It would be interesting to know, because the memes of our ancestors, whether our European, Asian, or native ancestors, or their heirs, including American’s of former generations especially, tended to praise and revere hard work.

And, High-Intensity Interval Training is definitely hard.  Every time.  It’s supposed to be.  That’s its nature.  However, it’s also not something we should do every day. The point is to do it.

Push to excellence. Leave mediocre behind.

Try Sprints for High Intensity Interval Training

Long distance runners learn how to push through that first tired, and then the second and their third, and more.  But even long distance runners, very rarely engage in an ALL OUT, fast as you can, sprint.  But when they do… if begin to incorporate sprinting intervals, they improve their fitness and reach their next level.5)

Think about it:  when we were kids, we would often head out the door at a breakneck speed.. ready in an instant to race a buddy to our next destination.  As adults, we rarely do that. Most of us stop running—really running, as in sprinting—after middle school, unless we’re in a sport that requires it.  Yet our bodies actually evolved to sprint in bursts, by necessity, to either eat (hunting), or to keep from being eaten (hunted).

Some of the most popular fitness images shared online are those that show someone running. Think of horses… dogs… leopards. These images are so popular and shared because the running sprinting form is beautiful, and there’s something in our human psyche that values and admires this grace. Sprinting, unlike jogging, works key muscles more intensely and completely, stimulating the release of Human Growth Hormone, known as HGH.

Kids are constantly active. We reclaim our youth through exercise, creativity and play.

Race you outside!

Kids are constantly active, they rest a little, then get back to playing!

Some bodies are genetically predisposed to run long distances, such as the Tarahumara Indians—the Running People—of Mexico,6) also known as the Raramuri Indians. And there’s the genetic build of groups such as the Kalenjin tribe from Ngong, Kenya.7)

Most people rarely lift a weight that’s so heavy they can only do 5-10 reps before their muscles reach failure. If that’s you, for the greatest muscle gains and fat losses, leveling up and engaging at a higher level, in speed and in weight, will produce more results in 30 minutes, than you could achieve in 60 minutes of sustenance exercise.

Also called rest-based exercise, the process is to push to failure, rest, then go all out again.


If you’re not sure how to do that, the very best way to push yourself to be your best is to hire a personal trainer or coach.  When I first hired my first personal trainer, Jill Coleman, I did not realize I could do as much as she required of me.

Similarly, when I first engaged in the best HIIT workout I’ve done, Metabolic Effect, I thought these guys were crazy!  How did they know I wasn’t going to have a heart attack, or injure something?!

Well, the truth is, they don’t know for sure. Nobody can. But what the best coaches do know is that most of us rarely, if ever, push ourselves even close to our maximum.  What they also know is:

The only way to grow and improve is to push as hard as we can… and then push a little more. The rule of thumb I use to gauge capacity is this:

If I think I can’t, I try anyway.  When I know I can’t, I stop.

If I think I can’t, I try anyway. When I know I can’t, I stop.

Then, after each workout, I gauge how I feel, and how sore I am, and this feedback helps me to get ever more in touch with that fine grey, ever-moving line of potential.

Meanwhile, back to the TIME thing…so, if you only have 15-30 minutes and you’re at home, try My Trainer Fitness for At Home 6 pack workouts.  I still use these when I want a quick workout at home.  They work. They rock.

And, at the gym, if you’re not doing your own workout but want to step it up, try My Gym Trainer workouts for the gym.  I rarely do an entire card at once now.  Rather, I keep to shorter, more intense workouts. I like to split do intense cardio one day, weight circuits on the next, so I can get through two months of different workouts before I start the cycle over.  Pretty cool!  24-48 different workouts in one book!

So, when you’re not sure what to do in 30 minutes to still get a GREAT workout, try one of these, My Trainer Fitness, and, just HIT IT HARD!  You will be glad you did. You can als opt in to our list for some free workouts.

Hiit Workout: High Intensity Interval Training for Best Results

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