Whilst I am quite partial to the weights’ rack and spend many days in the gym obsessing and pushing myself to lift heavier, I have to admit that there is little else that can come close to feeling as good as an accelerated heart rate and the surge of adrenaline that comes with it.
Running endlessly on a treadmill or spending hours on end on an elliptical will achieve little in terms of body sculpting. It will only affect your overall cardiovascular fitness, stamina and endurance. But such cardio is important and the best way to incorporate it effectively into your body toning workouts is HIIT.
HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training is short bursts of extremely high power exercises to get your pulse soaring. This kind of training, with short rests in between are incredibly effective in boosting one’s metabolism and fitness levels.
So here are my top 5 HIIT exercises which I like to throw in between lifting weights :
1) Skipping – Try and do a 100 of these and aim to do them in under a minute. Definitely a challenge!
2) Mountain climbers – These are both a test to my endurance and exhilarating at the same time. Work your way up from 60 to 100 of them. Aim to do them without stopping!
3) Weighted Step Ups – Grab a bench or a high enough ledge to do these on. If you’re struggling with the weights then begin without them and work your way up. I prefer doing all on one leg first before swapping over. 15 step-ups on each leg should do the trick 😉
4) Jump squats – Want that ever-elusive Beyonce ‘bootay’ then SQUAT with your ass to the ground or go home (apologies couldn’t resist throwing that in). Jump as high as you can by catapulting yourself into the air from a deep squat position. Really pop that booty in your squats for it to hit every muscle in your glutes and legs. 20 jump squats and I guarantee you your heart rate will peak
5) Burpees – Last but not least, BURPEES ! Hit the ground (running) as fast as you push yourself up to standing tall. Add some weights to make it that much more challenging. Can you do 20 without stopping ?
** Image courtesy : Kayla Itsines