Thursday, February 17, 2011

HIIT is a Hit!

So I have been researching after reading so much (and also hearing about HIIT=High Intensity Interval Training) about this 'new' method for accelerating not only fat loss but your strength and endurance.  CrossFit, and also the BeachBody (P90x, Insanity etc.) have a bit of HIIT background as well.  I have seen amazing results with personal friends in both body (shape and composition) and strength/endurance so I have been biding my time waiting for the perfect segway into giving this a shot.

Enter the start of speed training.

I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to see what, if anything this kind of workout would do.  I more or less put together a hodgepodge of a 'plan' together and set off for the gym yesterday. 

I had no idea what speed on the treadmill I could sustain for a minute interval let alone for 5 sets, so at first it was trial and error.  I jokingly had told someone that I was going to try at about 9mph.  LOL.  I didnt, but I did try at 8+mph and I almost flew off the back!  I could do it holding on, but you are supposed to do it at whatever speed without holding on.  Besides I know I couldnt have done it for 5 sets.  Before starting all of this I had done 20 min easy run to warm up.

So I put it at 8:00min miles (7.5mph) and that was doable.  By the time I got to the 5th one, I was feeling a bit braver and put it at 7:47pace.  Let me tell you by the time I got through, I was a sweaty mess and thought I was going to puke.  I think thats constitutes success.  :O)

I ran easy for an extra minute after the last interval, making it 3 min easy before I started again.  This time I put it at an easier pace (9:13) and did 2 min/1 instead of the 1min/2 in the first round. 

This made for 30 mins solid of heart pounding running, after the initial 20 min, and then I just cooled down with 5 min easy.  55 min total.

Then it was time to hit the weights for the same process.  Now this is where I am a little sketchy and probably Tabata (still researching) is probably more applicable, but I went at it with the 1 min full on attack as I had on the treadmill.

Again the hardest part here is determining what weight (max) you can do for a period of 1 min (fast) and then on to another machine/exercise immediately for another 1 min (fast) before your 'recovery'.  I thought parts of me were going to exhaust but I powered through.  I did ONE leg machine (something I try and stay away from because my running suffers from it), and I didnt do the HIIT.  I also used the Step for some step up back lunges, while using 5lb weights for bicep curls for extra cardio, but not nearly what I did a couple of weeks ago that made my calves so sore for 3 days it was crazy!

All in all I spent almost 2 hours in the gym and walked out of there a bit more limp than what I was when I went in, but felt really good with the overall workout thats for sure.  If my gym was open on weekends I would totally do this once on the weekend, but not the case.  Right now I am only going to do this on Wednesdays (will experiment with the treadmill part next week), because I am not willing to give up any of my hot yoga classes just yet :O)

If I get enough research in on Tabata (method) I might incorporate that in on the weights section next week; we'll see.

Plus I found Hip Hop Ab's cheap on eBay so that will be coming soon and I want to do that a few times a week as well...

Sounds like a lot huh?  Well I am on a mission and I aim to be successful at it!  More on that as we move along.

Have you ever done HIIT?  Tabata?  Thoughts?

Here is a link with some very basic information for HIIT and the treadmill

3 comments:

TX Runner Mom said...

When I was doing the Insanity program, I definitely noticed a difference in my endurance - especially on my shorter runs. Let us know how you like hip hop abs...it looks like fun!

melissadishes said...

I do HIIT once a week usually (its the only treadmill I ever do). I love it. I'd like to do it twice, but I don't know where I could stick it!

misty said...

I do HIIT on the elliptical twice a week. I think it makes a difference mostly in my VO2 max. I also do the Jillian Michaels' 30Day Shred at least once a week (I don't go near the weight section of my gym-too intimidating) and it really makes a difference in the tummy and the arms. Plus it doesn't strain my legs enough to effect running. Got it at Target for $9!