Why You Should Try a 20-Minute HIIT Workout

Workout Tips

Start with an easy warm up: You need to push yourself during the intervals, and you want to warm up your muscles to avoid injury.

Know how hard to push yourself: If you're wearing a heart rate monitor, try and keep your heart rate between 75 and 85 percent of your max during the high intensity intervals. Keep your heart rate at less than 65 percent of your max during your recovery time.

Breathing: During recovery intervals, focus on using your breath to lower your heart rate.

Nutrition: Eat before and after your workout. If you don't eat a few hours before your workout, you may not have the energy needed to reach high intensities. Try a 150-calorie snack that offers a mix of protein and carbs. After your workout, make sure you eat a proper recovery meal within 45 minutes.

Be careful: HIIT workouts have increased risks of injury and overtraining. Allow at least 36 hours between workouts, and take at least one day off per week to allow your body to recover.

A Sample HIIT Workout

This workout can be done almost anywhere. All you need is a timer and your own bodyweight.

Start with a dynamic warm up—jog in place for a few minutes or do some squats and arm circles. Once warmed up, perform each exercise, one after the other, for 30 seconds at 80- to 90-percent effort. Repeat the circuit four times, resting for 15 to 30 seconds between each cycle.

workout

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About the Author

Susan Grant Legacki

Susan Grant Legacki is the founding editor of LAVA Magazine, and currently serves as the magazine's features and online editor. Prior to joining LAVA, she worked as a Senior Editor at Inside Triathlon and Triathlete Magazine. She is an Ironman finisher, Boston-qualifying marathoner, certified Pilates instructor—and a fitness and nutrition enthusiast. You can read more about her on Susanegrant.com and follow her on Twitter at @susanglegacki.
Susan Grant Legacki is the founding editor of LAVA Magazine, and currently serves as the magazine's features and online editor. Prior to joining LAVA, she worked as a Senior Editor at Inside Triathlon and Triathlete Magazine. She is an Ironman finisher, Boston-qualifying marathoner, certified Pilates instructor—and a fitness and nutrition enthusiast. You can read more about her on Susanegrant.com and follow her on Twitter at @susanglegacki.

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