We’ve all done it, hated it and decided that it just wasn’t for us. Cardio (otherwise known as “HELL NO” by so many of us) has had a refresh over the last year or so. Long gone are the days of needing to hit the streets for two hours or yawn your way through EastEnders while on the Crosstrainer. If you haven’t yet tried it let me introduce you to HIIT, otherwise known as High Intensity Interval Training.

High intensity I hear you scream. Yup, in order to swap an hour for ten minutes it was always going to be hard but it’s ten minutes instead of sixty. Get it done and then get on with the rest of your evening, after all, you have a spare fifty minutes now.

How does it work? We shock your body. You give it one hundred per cent effort through quick intense bursts of exercise followed by short, sometimes active, recovery parents. The higher intensity periods create a metabolic demand which is effective for long-term fat loss and conditioning, while the lower intensity bursts let you recover and use your aerobic system. What’s in it for me?

Helps to lose body fat while retaining lean body mass.
Strengthens your cardiovascular system.
Increases your ability to tolerate a high level of intensity for a longer period.
It challenges your fast twitch muscle fibres which help push strength, power and aesthetics.
Develops your mindset, i.e. you become a total legend!

Give it to me: Tabata Style: 8 intervals > 4 minutes. 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off is one of the most common, this can be used with any type of exercise, remember you strive to progress and fail, it’s about pushing your boundaries not hiding from them.

Resistance Circuits: Choose exercises that steal your oxygen such as jump Squats, Skipping & Burpees (yup, the mean exercises) and mix with push-ups, planks, Clean & Press.

Cardio-Killers, one exercise that my clients love to do are Hill Sprints (when I say love, I use the term very loosely…hate, hate is what I mean). Popping the incline on the treadmill to 5’+ and sprinting for 20 seconds > standstill for 40, repeat x 10, ouch!

Note, HIIT means High Intensity for you, we are all different and at different stages of health and fitness capability, push to your limits, not someone else’s. If you’re looking for more examples I’ve just shared three at home and three at the gym HIIT routines for you all on my YouTube Channel, click here to follow along!