So summer is slowly but surely approaching and some of us are trying to be in our best possible shape, so that we can be bikini ready and fit enough for all the summer fun that is sure to accompany that period.
When you delve into the world of fitness and you are trying to manoeuvre around, one of the many terms you will hear ever so often is HIIT otherwise called High Intensity Interval Training. You will also occasionally hear the term LIIT which happens to follow the pattern of HIIT albeit at a slower pace and stands for Low Intensity Interval Training.
Interval training became the go to fitness regimen for most people because it was proven to burn more fat, use less time and keep the body in a state of fat burning for extended periods of time even after the workout had long ended. Even with LIIT which is of a much lesser intensity still by the principle of alteration, force you to burn more calories and keep burning them long after workout has ended.
Now as the name implies, HIIT offers an approach that makes you work extremely hard doing intense exercises for a period of about 30 seconds to one minute and a corresponding resting period of 30 seconds to one minute as well. What this does is that it forces the body to burn more fat as it is constantly alternating between rest and activity as opposed to a period of straight activity for 30 or more minutes. Just as your body recovering from an intense bout of exercise, you take into another round and force it to release more oxygen and energy, thereby burning the calories at a fast rate in an alarmingly short time. Most HIIT exercises include high knee jogging, burpees, planks, squat jumps and a range of other exercises.
LIIT on the other hand, even though it follows this technique, combines exercises that are slower and less demanding such as walking, a slow jog, swimming and other low impact moves. However, it is also effective because after an elevated heart rate no matter how little, it still follows the alternating principled forces the body to release more energy on demand.
On which form interval training is more beneficial for you and your weightless goals, I would say practice both but depending on where you are on your fitness journey.
If you’ve never worked before and weighing above a certain weight, asking you to do high knees and burpees is unrealistic but asking you to alternate between brisk walking and a slower pace is more feasible. So perhaps with clearance from your doctor, start with LIIT and as you get stronger, move to HIIT, this is because if you remain on LIIT for too long, you may reach a plateau and stop seeing results even after working hard.
Another use for LIIT is when you perhaps suffer an injury during workout and need to continue but at a much slower pace. Add this to postpartum weightless where you cannot immediately begin sprinting and jumping but can definitely brisk walk and swim.
So team HIIT or LIIT ladies?