Welcome to the Health and Fitness blog provided by the Tonbridge School Centre. Here at tscblog, the Fitness Team will aim to bring you advice and tips on training, nutrition, general health and wellbeing as well as all the help and motivation you'll need along the way. We hope you find the articles and images, informative, interesting and most of all useful!
Thursday, 29 January 2015
High Intensity Interval Training
Whenever someone asks me what is the best way to get fitter
and burn fat quickly? I’ll always respond with high intensity interval training
(HIIT). Anyone can try HIIT training as you need very minimal equipment to get
going so it works well in the gym or outside. HIIT also only requires you to
work for a 10-20 minute period and you will still definitely feel like you’ve
The benefits to HIIT are:
-Increased fat metabolism.
-Short term increase to your metabolic rate. (You’ll
burn calories after you’ve finished)
-Increases in human growth hormones (HGH)
responsible for metabolism regulation and the ageing process.
Not only do you get these benefits when you regularly perform
HIIT but it will also make you a lot fitter. Research has shown that doing HIIT
increases muscle oxidative capacity by almost 50%, increases glycogen storage by
20% whilst improving cycle endurance capacity by 100%. The University of Nebraska found that thirty second
intervals were better for building endurance and aerobic capacity than
intervals lasting three minutes. Therefore short intense interval training is
an effective proven way to quickly build fitness.
It is tough though as you’re working above your aerobic
threshold for extended periods of time and I would not recommend it to a
If you want to do it in a gym then find a treadmill, bike,
cross trainer etc. and set your total time limit. If you haven’t done HIIT
before start with about 10 minutes. This total time will comprise of 30 seconds
“rest time”: 30 seconds “work” time. During your work time you need to focus on
hitting a percentage heart rate of at least 80-90% of your maximum and during
your rest time you need to focus on recovering to get ready for the next
interval. If you feel you need more time to recover in between intervals then
increase your rest time and decrease your work time slightly and vice versa.
That’s the beauty of HIIT training you can play around with the work rest ratio
until it suits you. Remember the whole point of HIIT is that you’re working
above your aerobic threshold during the work times; you should be breathless
and building up lactic acid in your muscles so don’t be afraid to work hard. You
can also do this outside following the exact same principles as above obviously
you will be limited to bodyweight exercises like running, burpees or cycling
presuming you own a bike.
I hope you can incorporate HIIT into your training programme.
Whether you’re looking to get fitter, faster or stronger it will definitely be
of benefit. Start by doing it once or twice a week at the start or at the end
of your session and if you need any more assistance or guidance please feel
free to ask a member of the gym team to show you!
It’s that time again when people start setting themselves
goals and resolutions for the upcoming year… Why not take a second, read my
blog post and hopefully you’ll be a lot more likely to achieve some of your
aspirations this time round.
Typical New Year resolutions:
Train more regularly.
Reduce alcohol consumption.
These are all perfectly good goals, they’re realistic,
they’re achievable so why are the majority not achieved? Firstly, they’re too broad.
If there’s no plan of action inevitably after a few weeks you may lose track. One
way to increase your chance of success is to begin by implicating good habits prior
to working on a goal. These small stepping stones will help with overall
progress and make the larger end goal more achievable.
For example: If your goal is “eat healthily” compile a list
of all of the ‘smaller’ habitual changes you need to make in order for you to
Eat at least one to two pieces of fruit a day.
Eat at least one to two vegetables a day.
Drink more water/cut out juices and fizzy drinks.
Eat at least two portions of oily fish a week.
Increase your quality protein intake. (Chicken,
Beef, Eggs, Salmon, Brazil Nuts etc.)
Replace starchy carbohydrates with complex varieties.
(White Bread à
Brown Rice etc.)
Now these are just a handful of points you can implement
every day which will ultimately move you closer towards your end goal. More
importantly when you create your list the points should be specific to your
lifestyle. Hopefully you’ll start consistently achieving these smaller points
and it will become second nature to you.
Finally, don’t give up! Just because you’re not seeing
progress on whatever your goal may be it doesn’t mean you’re not working hard
for it. Some goals are short term and some are long term. Think of the small
habitual changes as laying the foundations to achieve long term success. You
need to determine your long term and short term goals then, break them down,
plan them out, improve your habits and finally you can begin to put a time
frame on the project.
I’m personally planning my goals for the 2015 now, breaking
them down and seeing whether they are short term or long term. For any more
advice and help on goal setting, why not arrange a free consultation with one
of our qualified personal trainers.