HIIT is one of the best ways to maximize weight loss. This effective training technique alternates between periods of intense exertion and short recovery periods, which burns fat in record time. People interested in the HIIT system often have one question: how many times a week do I need to take a HIIT class to get the best results?

What is HIIT?

HIIT, or high intensity interval training, is an exercise method that alternates intervals of heart pumping activity and intervals of recovery. This burns more fat, due to the way the body consumes oxygen. The intense bursts of activity force the body into oxygen shortage, and the body uses recovery period to restore oxygen levels. This creates an after burn effect, known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, which results in extra fat loss.

How do I get the best results with HIIT?

To get the best results from high intensity interval training, it’s important to choose the right interval length and the right HIIT frequency per week.

HIIT Interval Lengths

People should choose interval lengths that successfully manipulate heart rate. Each burst has to be performed at maximum intensity, as this raises the heart to optimum levels. Each recovery has to allow the heart rate to sufficiently recover, as this allows people to reap the benefits of the afterburn effect. People of varying fitness levels will have different burst/recovery lengths. People in great shape will require a shorter recovery period, as their heart rates will recover more quickly. People just starting their weight loss journey may want to start with longer recovery periods, as it will give them the best interval length for fat loss. Athletes may have a burst/recovery ratio of 30 seconds/30 seconds, while HIIT beginners may want to try a burst/recovery ratio of 30 seconds/2 minutes. These intervals should be sustained for 30 minutes to get the best results.

HIIT Frequency

Because a true HIIT workout will result in an after burn, or sustained fat burn post-workout, it’s not necessary to exercise everyday. Studies show that women who do HIIT workouts three times a week have great fat loss results. This suggests that HIIT frequency doesn’t need to exceed three or four times a week to be effective. When resistance training is added to the weekly regimen, fat loss results become even more impressive.

HIIT is a great workout for people looking to burn calories and shed fat. Because of its metabolic effects, it’s not necessary to do a HIIT workout every day.