Do you love bootcamp courses, but with a lack of time? Good news: low volume HIIT is just as effective. Less than 20 minutes of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can have as many benefits as the traditional 30 minutes a day recommended by general surgeons, according to a new study published in the Journal of Physiology. “In many cases, the low-volume HIIT variants offer comparable and sometimes superior improvements for a variety of health outcomes when compared to longer, but less intense, aerobic exercise interventions,” says study author Angelo Sabag, Ph.D. , from Western Sydney University in Australia.
In addition to strong quads and a six-pack, the benefits of low-volume HIIT include lowering blood sugar levels and building a stronger heart. “It improves our muscles’ ability to respond to insulin and enables us to make better use of blood sugar and fatty acids,” says Sabag. “HIIT also improves the heart’s ability to pump blood more effectively and to circulate oxygen and nutrients to organs and muscles.”
Would you like to try low volume HIIT? Sabag suggests this favorite routine: 10 x 60 seconds running or cycling at 80-90 percent of maximal effort, with 60 seconds of active rest (i.e. walking) with 30 to 50 percent effort in between intervals. “If you’re relatively untrained, start with five intervals and gradually increase the number until you reach 10 per session,” says Sabag.
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