Movement Challenge Day 19 – HIIT It

🎯 Today’s Mission:

To successfully complete today’s mission:

  • ✅ Do at least 10 minutes of high-intensity exercise today.
  • Complete the form at the bottom of the page when done.

💡 More Info:

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts are great for helping you increase the intensity and provide a lot of benefit in a short time.

The idea is to perform a short burst of intense exercise with close to maximum effort, and then alternate that with low-intensity recovery periods (these rest periods could either be complete rest or just an easier version of the exercise).

This is where the name “high-intensity interval training” comes from: You’re doing intervals of high-intensity exercises alternated with low-intensity exercises.

An example might be sprinting or cycling as fast as you can for 20 to 30 seconds and then walking, cycling slowly, or even just doing nothing for 60 to 90 seconds before repeating.

Going back to the Exertion Rating Scale that we used in Day 9:

  • The high-intensity exercise portion should be around 9-10 out of 10.
  • The low-intensity exercise portion should be around a 3-6 out of 10 (if your “rest” period is low-intensity exercise, otherwise just stop and rest completely).
0None – could be sleeping or watching TV.
1Very light activity – hardly any exertion, but doing more than sleeping or watching TV.
2-3🟢 Light activity – feels like something you could maintain for hours if need be, easy to breathe, talk, and even sing.
4-6🟠 Moderate activity – light sweating, breathing heavily, can talk but are too winded to sing, still a somewhat comfortable level of activity but becoming more challenging to maintain.
7-8🔴 Vigorous activity – moderate sweating, have difficulty speaking in full sentences without gasping for breath, getting uncomfortable and difficult to maintain.
9Very hard activity – heavy sweating, can barely breathe or speak more than a few words at a time, extremely uncomfortable and very difficult to maintain.
10Maximum effort activity – heavy sweating swearing, completely out of breath and unable to talk, cannot maintain for more than a very short time.

😍 Benefits of HIIT:

Healthline have a great evidence-based list of 7 benefits of High-Intensity Interval Training that really sums up this style of exercise nicely.

According to them:

  • HIIT Can Burn a Lot of Calories in a Short Amount of Time.
    HIIT may help you burn more calories than traditional exercise, or burn the same amount of calories in a shorter amount of time.
  • Your Metabolic Rate Is Higher for Hours After Exercise.
    Due to the intensity of the workout, HIIT can elevate your metabolism for hours after exercise. This results in additional calories being burned even after you have finished exercising.
  • It Can Help You Lose Fat.
    High-intensity intervals can produce similar fat loss to traditional endurance exercise, even with a much smaller time commitment. They can also reduce unhealthy visceral fat.
  • You Might Gain Muscle Using HIIT.
    If you are not very active, you may gain some muscle by starting HIIT but not as much as if you performed weight training.
  • HIIT Can Improve Oxygen Consumption.
    High-intensity interval training can improve oxygen consumption as much as traditional endurance training, even if you only exercise about half as long.
  • It Can Reduce Heart Rate and Blood Pressure
    HIIT can reduce blood pressure and heart rate, primarily in overweight or obese individuals with high blood pressure.
  • Blood Sugar Can Be Reduced by HIIT.
    High-intensity interval training may be especially beneficial for those needing to reduce blood sugar and insulin resistance. These improvements have been seen in both healthy and diabetic individuals.

Something that we’d like to add is that adding in 1 or 2 HIIT sessions a week is a great way to add variety to the types of exercise that you do. Low-intensity, moderate-intensity, and high-intensity exercise all have their own benefits.

⚠️ Exercise HIIT Warning Signs

You should seek medical advice from your doctor or a registered medical professional before beginning any new exercise program or if you haven’t exercised in a long time and would like to start.

If you notice any of these warnings signs, you should immediately stop exercising and seek medical help:

  • Extreme breathlessness or breathing problems such as wheezing or coughing.
  • Chest pain or unusual pressure.
  • Extreme perspiration.
  • Dizziness, or fainting.
  • Severe muscle pain or cramps.
  • Nausea.
  • Severe pain in any muscles or joints.
  • Extreme and long-lasting fatigue after exercising.

❓ What Exercise Should You Do?

First, know that high-intensity interval training workouts can be TOUGH!

Music is a great way to help you push through it and even enjoy it. So Greatist have put together what they believe is the ultimate HIIT playlist to get you energised: Feel free to share your own playlists with us in the community.

The workouts listed below are only suggestions. You can adjust the number of repetitions, the length of the rest periods, or the number of rounds to maintain this intensity level and to fit the duration of the HIIT workout you’re performing.

Running HIIT:

  • After warming up, run or sprint as fast as you can for 20 seconds.
  • Then, slow down to a jog or walk for 60 seconds.
  • Repeat for 10 minutes.

Cycling HIIT:

  • After warming up, pedal as hard and fast as possible for 30 seconds.
  • Then, slow down and cycle at an easy pace for 90 seconds.
  • Repeat for 10 minutes.

Bodyweight HIIT #1:

Bodyweight HIIT #2:

  • After warming up, do bear crawls for 20-25 seconds.
  • Rest for 30-35 seconds.
  • Then, do reverse lunges (easier) or jumping lunges (harder) for 20-25 seconds.
  • Rest for 30-35 seconds.

Make your own:

  • The variations of HIIT workouts really are endless. You can use your bodyweight only, gym machines, or weights.
  • The main idea is to work really hard for a short period of time followed by a longer rest or lower-intensity exercise period.
  • Feel free to play around with your own exercises and work/rest periods.

Remember to work within your level of ability and fitness.

For some people, “high-intensity” is flat out sprinting while for others it’s shuffling along as a brisk walk or jog.

✅ Mission Accomplished?

Fill in the form below once you’re done to keep track of your progress.

Which day of the challenge have you completed?
Used to automatically email you a copy of your mission submission so that you can keep track of which missions you have completed.
Challenger's Pledge(Required)