How many calories do HIIT workouts really burn?
Firstly, what on earth is HIIT?
High Intensity Interval Training are body weight resistance workouts that can range from 5min to 30mins. It’s maximum effort to achieve muscle fatigue and maximum oxygen use in a quick burst of exercise. It’s exercises like an amount of lunges, push ups, press ups, burpees, sprints etc in a short period of time, with little rest in between each set.
And what is Tabata?
Tabata is very similar to HIIT but the intensity stepped up and duration reduced to 4mins. Dr. Izumi Tabata developed this method in 1996, so this kind of exercising has been around a while! We now have more evidence that this type of exercise is so effective. And a mum’s best friend when we don’t have a lot of time and these can be done literally anywhere, no equipment needed.
There are other forms of interval-type training like Turbulence Training and the Little method, the principals are all the same and developed for various fitness levels and goals, combing both aerobic and anaerobic exercises at short duration changing the muscles at a cellular level.
So, how many calories do these workouts actually burn? Well, the short answer is 10-25 calories per minute, but this is dependent on a few things:
1. if you are male or female ( men tend to burn more due to their weight )
2. the heavier you are the more calories you burn due to the energy you have to exert
3. your fitness level and how efficient your body is at burning fat
4. how hard you decide to push yourself
So if you tried one of my HIIT workouts which range from 15-20 mins ( 3-4 sets ), on average, during the workout itself, you’d burn 150 - 500+ calories. Comparatively, you’d burn something like 10 calories per min if you were to run or cycle at a steady pace for 45-50mins.
However, there is still the post workout after-burn which is where the magic happens. High intensity workouts have been proven to help the body continue to burn fat 9 times more than exercise done for longer duration and at a steady pace. Your metabolism fires up for a further 48 hrs after one of these workouts. Add a healthy high protein diet into the mix and you have a powerful fat burning and lean muscle building formula.
Ideally, you’ll not only be gasping for breath at the end of your workouts, your muscles should also be burning like crazy (in fitness terms, this means you’ll be in an anaerobic state of training). This will allow you to maximise calorie burn both during and after your workouts.
Here are some of my sample HITT workouts you can try at home ( with or without your kids ), I’d recommend to add a minimum of 3 HIIT type workouts into your weeks exercise regime to see results. They take no time to do, it’s a good sweat-up and they are incredibly effective, FREE and fun to do with your kids. I will update this blog every week with a new workout to try. What excuse do you have left not to try it? Click here to see sample HIIT workouts you can try now!
Please comment below. I’d love to hear what exercise regime you love doing?