High-intensity interval training (or HIIT, as it’s more widely known as) is fast becoming one of the most popular ways for people to train and get in shape.
The idea is that you alternate periods of intense physical activity with periods of recovery, so that you’re potentially able to enjoy similar fitness benefits in a shorter time frame… perfect if you’re super busy but still want to get as much exercise as you can.
However, this kind of training isn’t for the faint of heart and you should be prepared to push yourself if you want to see the benefits, as well as making sure that you’re prepping properly outside the gym to ensure you’re able to perform at optimum capacity while in the gym.
First of all, you’ll need to have lots of energy - and this means you’ll need to give your body fuel before your workout.
Aim to eat a few hours before you train, opting for some sort of carb and protein-based food to help keep you going. This could be something like an apple with peanut butter on it (which is delicious, by the way), some fruit and Greek yoghurt, or a banana or two.
After your session, you’ll also need to get some fuel back in your body and make sure that you’re getting enough protein to help your muscles repair themselves after such intense exercise. If you need food on the go, what about making some chicken satay to put in your big backpack? Delicious and nutritious!
Hydration is also a top priority for any kind of training, but particularly HIIT. Drink water regularly throughout the day but also consider having a sports drink in your bag to replace those lost electrolytes (like sodium and potassium) if you’ve been active for a while.
And don’t forget to get a good night’s sleep! This is when your body will repair itself and you’ll be ready to attack your next HIIT workout if you’ve been well rested the night before.