Are HIIT Workouts Effective?

Are HIIT Workouts Effective

High intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts are the most effective exercise for fat loss, boosting your stamina, toning your body and much more.

All in record time!

In fact, there’s no other exercise that compares with it.

If your objective is to effectively increase the oxidative capacity of your muscles and get shredded, you can’t go wrong with HIIT.

Or can you?

There’s no other exercise technique that I am aware of that comes close to HIIT workouts for building stamina, focus, shaping up, and losing weight. 

However, just like any exercise technique you use, there’s plenty of people who will tell you it doesn’t work that well for them. 

It’s too hard, it’s too easy, or how in the world could 15 minutes 2-3 times a week be productive?

In this article we’ll look at the most common mistakes people make, and:

9 Reasons Why HIIT Workouts May Not Be Effective?

1. Not Enough Effort

HIIT workouts are tough, to say the least. There’s no denying that.

Check out this post to see who this exercise is good for.

The good news is that these workouts are short.

But to realize the potency of HIIT, you’re going to have to go completely all out for 15 minutes.

Ideally, you should not train for more than 15 minutes. When you go beyond that you start to lose the effectiveness of the workout.

During the 15 minutes you’re training, you must work with maximum intensity.

You absolutely must not hold back.

Giving it your complete and unconditional all is where you’ll find the results. 

Don’t worry, everybody is panting and gasping for more air with high intensity interval training – not just you.

Again, if you aren’t putting out max effort during the “work” interval, the effectiveness of your workout is lost.

2. Training too long

I have a really bad habit of thinking if a little is good — how good will a lot be?

That’s not true with HIIT workouts at all!

As I mentioned earlier, the results are within 15 minute workouts, so stick with that. 

You can even cut that time down to about 4 minutes by using what’s probably the most effective of the HIIT workouts — The Tabata Exercise Protocol.

You simply won’t be able to train at the high intensity levels demanded by any form of this exercise for an hour. 

And there’s no point in doing that anyway.

In fact, if you are going any past 20 minutes, chances are good you’re not training hard enough — putting out enough.

It’s these short and super intense sessions that work to get you lean and fit.

3. Training too often

When you first get started with HIIT, it’s best to workout only once or twice a week. 

At some point you will notice you are getting fitter, and your stamina is lasting longer.

If you’re already exercising regularly, you should feel this boost within a couple of weeks, if not it will just depend on your fitness level when you get started doing HIIT.

You will know for yourself when it’s time to move your game up to 3 or perhaps 4 times a week. 

I do not suggest you workout with HIIT 4 times a week, because it will prove much more effective if you have at least one off day between workouts. 

You’ll find it much better with these days spread out than doing them on consecutive days.

One of the biggest mistakes beginners can make is trying to do these daily

We all know that it won’t take many times of trying to workout bone tired, exhausted, and drained, before you start skipping them altogether.

So, don’t train too often, take your rest days and you will see much better effects over all.

4. Insufficient recovery time/too much recovery time

The recovery time I’m speaking of here is the rest interval during your 15 minute workout.

Sufficient intervals to rest between work intervals are a must. 

In my opinion, the ideal rest break before moving on the next set is about 15 – 30 seconds. (If you’re working out on cardio equipment, doing sprints, or walking, you don’t really need to stop — just slow down)

If you go from set to set, without resting, you lose the point of this form of exercise. Simply put, you can only go all out for short burst or intervals.

100% exertion or effort is what makes HIIT the most effective way to exercise — not 80% effort.

You work interval gets your heart to pumping all out, and then you need the rest interval for your heart to slow down just a little — so you maximize your work effort again.

Of course, you defeat the purpose if have a 2 minute rest interval between each all out session, right?

Make your workout effective with enough recovery time, and not too much.

5. Not Making Workouts a Priority

The biggest mistake of all is — not working out.

If you expect to see the phenomenal results, then you’re going to have to put your HIIt workouts before TV, social media, and hanging out with friends. 

Really — you only need to schedule 15 minutes for the actual workout.

That’s all you need, 15 minutes. 

What’s that? 1 percent of your day?

I think everyone can schedule time for exercise 2-3 times a week?

Schedule your workouts, and fit other things around them, and you will see fast results like never before. 

6. Using weights that are too heavy

Beginners to HIIT can find it difficult to understand the point is speed, and speed only.

If you’re working out with weights that too heavy, you are wasting energy and time struggling with them.

This something you are going to have to work out over a few training sessions. 

You want a weight that allows you to get in about 15 reps as fast as you can pump during the work interval.

I think too light is better than too heavy. You want it to be an effort, but not a struggle. 

You want speed!

HIIT is not the same as training for hypertrophy, so don’t confuse the two.

7. Not warming up

If you don’t take the time to warm up first, you’ll lose the effectiveness of your HIIT workout. 

Even though this post is concerning warming up to run, there’s good info that can be translated to any form of exercise.

Doing HIIT with cold muscles is never going to be a good idea!

Injuries, sprains, and pulled muscles are what you’ll wind up with without taking time to warm up muscles and put your body on notice. 

I find that spending a couple of minutes on a treadmill or riding a stationary bike will get my heart pumping and let it know we are about to get started.

8. Training on an empty stomach

HIIT is NOT fasted cardio.

Always get in a light meal an hour or so before you start your workout. 

Eating healthy before a workout is going to raise your blood sugar levels enough to provide the energy for before and after you exercise. 

Don’t concern yourself with things like insulin spikes and such, because your workout will be so hard that you’ll be burning right through the fat stores.

9. Poor form

Good form is key to any exercise at all! 

Without concentrating on and practicing good form you always risk injury of every type. 

If you’re not sure about form for any exercise you are doing, google it. There’s plenty of information on the web about form for anything you’re doing. 

When it comes to HIIT — never sacrifice your form for more speed. 

You want to maintain your form while exercising at a very high pace. 

Attempting the exercises in poor form is going to make your workout less effective, along with risking injury.


HIIT is not hanging out with your friends in the gym and doing half baked workouts.

HIIT is hard and all out work for a few minutes.

So, don’t waste your effort! Avoid these 9 mistakes and you’ll find out for yourself in short order, that HIIT workouts are the most effective way to exercise.

Take your workouts and exercise to the next level and get shredded and fit with HIIT.

You will feel so much better and look so much better in 3 – 4 weeks, that you’ll be sold forever. 

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