The Amazing Benefits of HIIT Workouts For Women
Although the fitness world seems to be constantly overflowing with trends, HIIT is more than that. The effectiveness and versatility of this training method have made it withstand the test of time, and more and more people keep hopping on the train for good reason.
But it turns out that high-intensity interval training can impact the female body even more, not just in terms of physical results but also in health benefits.
Read on to learn about the benefits of HIIT workouts for women.
Interval training for fat loss
In high-intensity interval training, you alternate short periods of intense exercise with periods of rest or lower intensity movement.
Traditional forms of cardio, such as running or swimming, are aerobic, which means they use oxygen as their primary energy source. HIIT is anaerobic–it uses energy stored in your muscles, just like weight training.
While aerobic exercise can sustain a moderate level of activity using a continuous supply of oxygen, anaerobic exercise requires more energy than your aerobic system can produce. It uses glucose as fuel through a process called glycolysis, which produces energy quickly.
Anaerobic training is very hard work, which is why it’s usually performed for shorter amounts of time. However, it burns more calories per minute than aerobic training, according to the American College of Sports Medicine. This makes it a great workout for weight loss.
It also has a powerful effect on your metabolism, since it increases post-exercise energy consumption (EPOC). In other words, you burn more calories–including more fat–during the recovery period after you’re done exercising.
General benefits of HIIT workouts
If there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that HIIT is as popular as it is for good reason, It’s packed with benefits, both in terms of lifestyle and health:
- It’s efficient: High-intensity interval training burns more calories and fat in a shorter amount of time.
- It boosts your metabolism: HIIT increases post-exercise energy consumption, or EPOC, which means you keep burning calories for hours after performing a workout.
- It can help you build strength: HIIT typically includes full body exercises like mountain climbers, plank position, and jump squats. This means it works the entire body in one session, which helps strengthen your muscles.
- It preserves your muscle mass: This type of training helps with muscle preservation, and in some cases, it can even help increase muscle mass.
- It helps reduce your blood sugar: Studies have shown that it reduces blood sugar and improves insulin resistance more than a regular cardio workout or other types of continuous exercise.
HIIT exercise equipment: The thing about high-intensity interval training is it’s a training method, so it can be very versatile. You can include only bodyweight exercises, but also include weights or other equipment. At Sweat 440, we make our 40-minute classes as dynamic and fun as possible, combining many different exercises and targeting different muscle groups. If you’re looking for a HIIT class near me, don’t hesitate to visit our Austin, TX studio. (Pssst…your first class is on us!)
Benefits of HIIT workouts for women
It can help keep your body in balance
When performed properly, HIIT can contribute to keeping the female body in balance in terms of hormones, bone density, and muscle retention.
But what does “performing it properly” really mean? Well, there are several factors to keep in mind, such as:
- Intensity: To get the most out of your session, you should aim to reach up to 85-90% of your maximum heart rate during the work intervals (an easy way to calculate it is by subtracting your age from 220, but if you’re a first-timer, we recommend you get help from your trainer or doctor).
- Interval ratios: In high-intensity interval training, exercises can last up to 60 seconds–they shouldn’t last more than that, because you won’t be able to maintain the intensity for longer.
- Recovery and rest: There’s two important points when it comes to recovery: first, using the “rest periods” during the HIIT session to get your heart rate back down is key to get the most out of the work periods. Second, getting proper rest between each session is also part of getting the results you want–so make sure you’re getting quality sleep and a minimum of one or two rest days per week.
- Consistency: In general, 3 to 5 sessions of HIIT per week is enough to get results, and each workout can last from 20 minutes up to 45 minutes (it shouldn’t last more than an hour). You can also alternate HIIT workouts with other types of workouts during the week. The most important thing is to stay active and listen to what your body needs each day!
It helps you achieve faster results
Although HIIT workouts are effective both in men and women, the benefits seem to be even more powerful in women. In a study from Bowling Green State University, the women worked out at a higher heart rate and maintained a higher percentage of oxygen consumption. In other words, both genders exercised at the same pace, but the women’s bodies worked harder. This means they can get more cardiorespiratory benefits long-term.
It helps improve your mood
Intense exercise such as HIIT has been proven to help regulate your mood and improve brain function. In fact, one study from Neuroscience Letters showed that HIIT boosts a protein called BDNF, which plays a role in regulating brain function and mood. Low levels of BDNF are associated with mental disorders like depression and bipolar disorder.
It’s good for the menopause transition
HIIT helps metabolic health by lowering blood sugar and improving insulin resistance, which are harder to manage during menopause. It also boosts the production of the human growth hormone (HGH) and increases testosterone, which helps menopausal women regain necessary muscle mass to live a healthier life.
Your first class is FREE
Get the best HIIT workout plan at Sweat 440
HIIT workouts are full of health benefits for most people, but in some aspects, women can benefit more from them. At Sweat 440, our trainers help you reach your individual goals even while attending a group class. You not only get an effective, affordable workout in just 40 minutes, but you also connect with other people and have tons of fun!
Looking for HIIT workouts for women that are easy to fit into a busy lifestyle? Visit our Austin, TX studio and get your first class for free!
General HIIT benefits VS HIIT benefits for women
General HIIT benefits
- It’s efficient–it burns calories and fat in a shorter amount of time than continuous exercise.
- It boosts your metabolism.
- It helps you build strength in your entire body.
- It helps with muscle mass preservation.
- It helps reduce blood sugar and improve insulin resistance.
- It’s versatile–you can perform it using just your body weight or include weights and other equipment.
HIIT workouts for women
- It can help keep the female body in balance when it comes to hormones, bone density, and muscle retention.
- It helps achieve faster results and provides more cardiorespiratory benefits long-term.
- It helps regulate brain function and mood.
- It helps with metabolic health and boosts the production of HGH and testosterone during menopause, allowing for a healthier transition.