The Science Behind High Intensity Interval Training

HIIT training is the new kid on the fitness block, but like most effective training routines, it's been around forever. It's tried, tested and proven and is clearly distinguishing itself from the rest of the pack as a time saving, highly results oriented method of training. Olympic sprinters, gymnasts, football players, dancers and countless other athletic disciplines leverage HIIT or some derivation thereof. With the blessings from the fitness Gods, high intensity interval training has turned into one of the most effective and sought after training techniques today. The science behind the jaw dropping results achieved in half the time of other training methods is complex, but here are the highlights you should know:

  • Awesome Afterburn - the more intense the workout, the more intense the afterburn effect. HIIT positively impacts the magnitude and duration of EPOC, or excess post-exercise oxygen consumption. Basically, EPOC is how your body uses oxygen to return to homeostasis after an intense workout. Translation? Your body burns tons of extra calories after your workout to repair your muscles and bring you back to homeostasis.
  • HIIT Makes You Younger - HIIT workouts have been proven to stimulate the production of the human growth hormone (HGH), which is linked to slowing down the aging process.
  • Increase Your Metabolism - HGH also causes you to increase calorie burn long after the workout is over which means, your metabolism is moving at ludicrous speeds.
  • Build Muscle and Burn Fat - HIIT, unlike most other exercises allows you to build lean muscle and burn fat AT THE SAME TIME. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories your body is burning at rest, like when you are sitting on the couch watching re-runs of Friends. 
  • Improves Your Insulin Sensitivity - Insulin is the fat storage hormone and when our insulin levels are high, it's difficult to lose fat. HIIT has been proven to increase insulin sensitivity, thus improving the way your cells respond to insulin in the body. Conclusion? Goodbye fat storing insulin and hello to fat blasting High Intensity Interval Training.

So when considering a training method, go for gusto and HIIT it!