Looking to get in shape for your next holiday? Or simply want to lose a couple of pounds? High-intensity interval training (HIIT) could help.
Unlike other common means of exercise, HIIT requires a wider range of muscles, consisting of intense effort for a short amount of time, followed by a brief rest period.
Working at a higher level of intensity over smaller segments of time requires maximum oxygen and effort. As a result, it’s been known to produce a significant increase in aerobic and anaerobic fitness, helping to shed fat and shape muscles.1
And given that exercise is one of the main reasons why people struggle to exercise, the short and sharp nature of HIIT gives you no real excuse to get hot and sweaty.2
So limber up, clear a space in the living room and give our 15 minute HIIT workout plan a go today.
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15 minute HIIT workout plan
Perform each exercise at high-intensity for 45 seconds, followed by a 15-second rest. Once you’ve completed all five (one set), repeat the set two more times. If you’re a beginner, add in a short 30 second rest period in between sets or only complete half of the programme.
Stand upright and engage your stomach muscles before starting. Next, take a step forward, squatting through your hips and applying your weight onto your lead leg. Hold the position and then apply the weight to your back leg and return to an upright position. Switch the lead leg and repeat as many times as you can in 45 seconds.
Get into a press-up position and engage your stomach muscles to make sure your body is stable. Next, simply bend one of your knees, bringing it towards your chest. Explosively return this leg to the press-up position and do the same with the opposite leg. You should feel like you’re climbing a wall.
The transition from mountain climbers to press-ups should be quick and painless. Simply set your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and your feet in a comfortable position to support your weight. Once your arms are straight, core and bum is engaged, steadily lower your body by bending your arms until your chest reaches the ground or your arms are at 90 degrees. Explosively straighten your arms, returning your body to the original position.
For a bigger challenge, place your hands closer together to form a diamond. Just note, you won’t be able to go all the way to the ground when doing this.
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Bend down, place your hands on the ground and look forward. Next, kick your legs back behind you into a press-up position.
Keeping your chest up, spring your feet back in towards your hands, returning to the original crouching position. Finally, jump up into the air as high as you can, stretching your hands to the ceiling. Repeat this for 45 seconds.
Lie down on your back, raising your legs and bending them to imitate riding a bike. Start the exercise by partly straightening one leg in front and twisting and turning your body so that the opposite elbow reaches the top of the knee.
Maintaining your core, return your body and leg back into the start position. Repeat with the opposite leg and elbow in a rapid motion.
2. Inelmen EM, Toffanello ED, Enzi G, et al. Predictors of drop-out in overweight and obese outpatients. International Journal of Obesity. 2005;29(1):122–128. [PubMed]