From fat to fit in just 4 minutes

The rise in popularity of high intensity interval training (HIIT) is helping to get Britain fitter faster. This approach to fitness is in contrast to traditional methods that relied on long slow runs, structured classes or participation in competitive sport.

Part of its success is connected to the online generation that accesses lifestyle content via an app, a video or with help of a blogging sensation.

What is HIIT? (high intensity interval training)

  • Exercises are simple
  • Workouts take as little as four minutes and typically range from 10 to 20 minutes
  • Easy to do at home
  • Little or no equipment is required
  • Exercises are carried out at near maximum intensity
  • Apps or phone timers help to monitor the duration of exercises and rests
  • Four or five exercises combine to form a ‘set’ and these sets are repeated as fitness levels improve


Top five HIIT exercises

Do each of these for 30 seconds, resting for 15 seconds between each exercise. Repeat each set up to three times as your fitness allows.

Push-ups – The great all-round upper body exercise. If you find these hard, drop your knees to the ground and as you lower your body, pull your elbows close to your sides.

Squats – Great for building upper leg strength. As you bend your knees, push your bum back and keep your feet under your hips and your bodyweight in your heels.

Jumping jacks – Energetic star jumps that throw your feet wide and your hands high. Stay bouncy on the balls of the feet.

Ankle taps – Lay down on your back and raise your knees, feet on the ground. Lift your head, neck and shoulder blades off the ground and reach your left hand to tap your left heel, quickly rock to and repeat on your right heel and keep alternating for 30 seconds.

Butt kicks – Jog on the spot, bringing your heel up to your buttock and repeat on alternate legs, aiming to stay light on the balls of your feet.

Find out more about the proto-col nutrition range for sport, every day wellbeing and joint care here.

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