Many people have heard of HIIT training, which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. This training method is said to give great results in a short amount of time. No need to spend hours in the gym. However, sometimes it is difficult to put together a HIIT training program that is easy to follow. If that is what you are looking for, Beachbody provides such a workout, Insanity by Shaun T.

The Insanity workout program is a 60 day (63 to be exact) boot-camp like workout. Based on the theory behind HIIT training, Insanity utilizes intervals to keep your heart rate moving up and down. However, Insanity differs significantly from traditional intervals in one key way. Whereas in tradition HIIT training, you perform short bursts, such as a 50 yard or 30 second sprint, followed by a 2-3 minute active rest, which is usually a walk or slow pedal. With this type of training, your heart rate shoots up quickly and then comes down to a slower pace. For example, when I do traditional HIIT training, I do outdoor sprints. I will sprint 100 yards and walk 300 yards. At the end of the sprint, my heart rate is in the 170’s (beats per minute). At the end of the 300 yard walk, my heart rate drops to the 100’s. Not bad, but could definitely improve.

With Insanity, the intervals are about 3-4 minutes long and consist of exercises such as pushups, jumps, sprints, hops, and a myriad of other sports training moves. A lot of the moves remind me of playing high school sports. After the interval, you rest for 30 second. At the end of the 30 seconds, the next interval starts! Insanity has basically taken traditional HIIT training and flipped it on its head. Now to compare heart rates again, during the Insanity interval, my heart rate is in the high 170’s. During the 30 second rest, I get it down to the high 150’s. See the difference. My heart rate is staying elevated for a longer period of time which helps me to burn a ton of calories. At the end of an Insanity workout, there is not a dry patch of clothes on me.

Now understand that Insanity is not for everyone. You must be mentally and physically prepared to put your body through 63 days of extreme work. Great results do not come easy. Both Insanity and traditional HIIT training work to help you reduce body fat. If you don’t think you can handle Insanity, start with traditional HIIT training to build up your cardio-endurance. Once you have trained your cardiovascular system to handle intervals, you should be ready to try Insanity!

By Lois C

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