Any type of exercise, whether it is low intensity training for a long period of time or high intensity training for short intervals will improve overall health. The best of these for fat burning is the latter and is called High Intensity Interval Training. It is essentially a serious of all-out, intense bursts of exercise followed by recovery periods. I like to stick to a 2:1 work-to-rest ratio.
A high-intensity workout will cause you to become breathless and feel the burn in your bod! In other words, your oxygen stores will become depleted, your heart rate will increase, and lactic acid will begin to build in the muscles quickly. These high intensity workouts cause the body to have to work harder to rebuild the oxygen stores after your workout. When your body has to work harder, you burn more calories. What I’m getting at is that you will continue to burn calories for up to 24 hours after your tough workout. Exactly how much you can continue to burn post-workout directly correlates to the duration and intensity of your workout.
Studies show strenuous resistance exercise results in greater post-exercise oxygen consumption compared to steady-state endurance exercise that burns the same number of calories. So while you might burn the same calories during an hour-long jog, shorter, more intense workouts give you more bang for your buck.
High Intensity Interval Training is relevant and relative to everyone. A young athlete might think of box jumps or stadium sprints as their HIIT. Someone who is a beginner in the workout world would consider walking at an incline of 6% instead of 0% for 60 seconds a hard interval. They both make sense and they both work! As long as you are increasing your heart rate for a period of time and getting BREATHLESS, it’s working.