Do you find that exercise usually ends up on your might do rather than your must do list? Maybe you’re not sure where to begin, maybe you’re short on time, or perhaps you just can’t face leaving the house once your must do list is complete.
Well, I’ve got the smart solution for you: HIIT.
You don’t need to join a gym, you don’t need any specialised equipment and you don’t need to be super fit to get started. You just have to be prepared for some good old fashioned working out and it can even be done in the comfort and security of your own home.
All you need is 30 minutes three times a week and three exercises you can perform with good technique. This could be running on the spot, a box press up and a squat or running up and down the stairs, jumping jacks and a get up which simply means lying on the floor and getting up – over and over again!
HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training simply means exercising at an intensity that keeps your heart rate high and taking only short breaks between each work interval so that your heart rate doesn’t drop back down by too much.
HIIT helps address any hormone imbalance in your body and transform it from a fat storing environment to a fat burning one. It also produces an incredible afterburn effect in the body meaning that for some of you, that fat burning will continue for up to 36 hours after your HIIT session ends.
Let me share my three favourite exercises and how you can put them together into a smart routine that’s guaranteed to get you in shape in a matter of weeks.
Few exercises work as many muscles as the squat. It’s an excellent movement for toning and tightening the muscles in your butt, abs and legs. So, how do you squat?
- Begin by standing with you feet wider than shoulder width apart.
- Flex from the hips and knees to sit back.
- Make sure you keep your chest lifted and look straight ahead.
- To rise, push up through your heels and squeeze your glutes (butt cheeks)!
I can hear your groans already but actually anyone can do a press up, you just need to find the right variation for your fitness levels. The press up is usually thought of as being a good exercise for the chest and arms but it’s also a very powerful core exercise. So, how do you do a press up?
- Engage your stomach muscles and lower your chest towards the floor by bending your arms.
- Keep your bodyweight forward and avoid dipping your head!
- Reverse the movement by straightening your arms.
If the box press up is a challenge, then try a wall press up. Stand at arm’s length from a wall and place your hands on the wall, shoulder-width apart. Engage your stomach muscles and lower your body towards the wall, keeping your shoulders, hips and ankles aligned. Reverse the movement by straightening your arms.
So you see, anyone can do a press up.
- Prop yourself up on your forearms and toes to activate all those muscles from the shoulders down to the toes.
- Ensure that your elbows are directly underneath your armpits.
- Keep you buttocks tights, back flat and avoid sagging at the hips.
If the full plank is too much of a challenge drop your knees to the floor.
Warm up – it’s really important not skip this. Take a brisk walk around the kitchen, dance to your favourite tune, anything to get your heart rate up and your body and mind prepared for exercise.
Perform each exercise, the squat, the press up and the plank for 30 seconds back to back.
Keep repeating that circuit of three exercises until you can’t possibly continue or your technique fails.
Once that happens, rest and recover until you feel like you can start again.
Basically keep going until you can’t and then rest until you can!
It may be that the first time you try this, you only do the squats and press ups before you need to rest, and then do the plank. But over time, as your fitness levels increase, you’ll find that you’ll be able to perform all three exercises a few times before you need to rest.
Repeat the exercise and rest period sequence for up to a maximum of 20 minutes, depending on your current fitness level.
Finish with some stretching to cool down.
Other less intense forms of exercise will get you fit, keep you healthy and are excellent for your mental well being but if you want to correct hormone imbalance and burn fat then you need to exercise at a high intensity.
So, what are you waiting for? Choose your three exercises, get started with your HIIT routines and I guarantee you’ll be seeing results in as little as two weeks. Share this blog with your friends so they can exercise the smart way too!