top of page
  • scullyfitness

benefits of "H.i.i.t."

What is HIIT and why would we do it??? High Intensity Interval Training is as the name suggests a fast paced short burst of exercise. There are many different types of ways to do this eg. Push Ups, Jumps Squats, Kettlebell Swings, Skipping, or even outdoor doing sprint intervals.

Example of a HIIT Workout:

Kettlebell Swings - 20 secs

(Rest - 10 secs)

Push Ups - 20 secs

(Rest - 10 secs)


**Note: Time Interval can be 20, 30 or 40 seconds**

Saves Time

The major benefit of HIIT is that its a massive time saver. 30 minutes on a cross trainer can burn about 300 calories, but we can also burn 300 calories in 10-15 mins with a HIIT style workout (mostly due to the Post Workout Metabolic Rate). Generally a HIIT Workout is done 20 secs on/10 secs off for 4 mins (TABATA) or 30 secs on/15 secs off. The times can vary depending on your fitness level but this is a good starting point as if the time is too long (45-60 secs) you will lose your intensity.

Being able to do a workout in 10-15 mins can be a game changer if you're trying to train before work or during a lunch break.

provides a varied training plan

Some people love cardio, some don't. If you find 30 mins on a cross trainer or jogging for long periods boring, than maybe HIIT is for you. Mondays could be Kettlebell Swings with Push Ups for 10 mins with breaks, and the next day could be Box Jumps with Ball Slams. This provides a great variety in exercises, and therefore a wider range of muscles used each day which will in turn provide better results. If you enjoy something, or love the challenge and can't wait to train, then you are extremely likely to keep this up long term. You can do one exercise only in your HIIT, but two will provide more recovery in between sets and also makes the time fly by. If putting two together generally try to combine upper with lower body so you don't get exhausted.

GREAT for toning

One of the disadvantages of steady state cardio (Running, Cross Trainer etc) is that we can lose muscle over time as our body is constantly in that "Burn Phase" of losing calories, burning fat and never really building muscle. Of course I understand that not everyone wants to build muscle, but unfortunately it's "Use It Or Lose It" as far as muscle tone and body shape is concerned.

But not to fear, this is where HIIT can be extremely beneficial!! If you generally run 2-3 times a week and want to tone up then you could add 4-10 mins HIIT once or twice a week to your training. This can be done at the end of your run or on a day you're not running, it's entirely up to you!. Doing bodyweight exercises here will be enough to notice a difference in definition of muscle mass in your arms, legs, glutes or core. Give this one a go:

may help you lose weight

Since HIIT burns more calories because of EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption), it can be a more convenient way to help you lose weight, since you don't have to spend as much time working out.

A 2019 review in The British Journal of Sports Medicine analyzed 77 scientific studies. The review found that people who did HIIT workouts lost 28.5% more fat than people who did moderately-intense continuous exercise, like running. As your heart rate stays up for the entire exercise, this leads to more calories burned and can lead to greater weight loss.

Improves oxygen & blood flow

Your heart pumps blood throughout the body to deliver oxygen and nutrients to the muscles. Research has found lots of evidence that HIIT workouts can support and even strengthen this blood flow through the body.

For example, a 2017 study published in the journal Science and Sport split 26 school children into two groups: one group engaged in HIIT training, and one did a more traditional exercise regimen. The study lasted seven weeks. The HIIT group improved their cardiorespiratory capacity, or the ability of their heart and lungs to deliver oxygen to the body, more than the traditional exercise group, and also lost more fat.

In addition, a 2020 study published in the journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology found that just one HIIT session improved blood flow to the brain, saying "HIIT is an effective time‐efficient alternative to long‐duration lower‐intensity exercise that offers similar vascular benefits."

Taking this information on board, HIIT can be an incredibly useful tool for athletes whose sports requires large amounts of short sprints and the ability to recover quickly. In Training for sport it is always important to simulate your sport while in training eg. Rugby involves running 20 meters in a straight line, Soccer involves running 5 meters in different directions.


Try this Banger of a HIIT Workout & let us know how you get on!!!!


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page