HIT and HIIT for optimal results in short time

Meyken Houppermans, PhD. CrossFit Level 3 Trainer.
Founder and Head Coach
If you want your training to be fun and effective, HIT and HIIT training is perfect for you. Already after two weeks, you will notice improvements in endurance, muscle strength, metabolism and body composition.

HIT: muscle training at high intensity in short time

Two great principles are High Intensity Training (HIT) and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). Although especially the latter is gaining popularity, both have been applied for many years in various sports. Several scientific studies have shown  that HIT and HIIT are good ways to quickly get fit. Only after two weeks of working out three times per week your endurance, muscle strength, metabolism and body composition will improve.

With HIT your entire body is trained in every session in a short period of time. Your muscles are trained in a way whereby after every set, you can’t perform any positive repetitions anymore in a technically correct and safe way. What does this mean concretely?

-         A set consists of 8 to 12 repetitions per exercise. A positive movement refers to either the push or pull of the weight. It does not cover the retreating movement.

-         A technically correct and safe way means a full and flowing movement at a slow pace: 4 counts up, 4 counts down. No explosive action.

-         You train up to 1 to 3 sets per muscle group, up to 60 minutes per workout, up to 3 workouts per week with adequate resting days. Training longer or more frequent should be avoided: the high intensity training may quickly lead to overtraining. The rest periods between sets are short. A good warming up and cooling down are very important.

HIIT: endurance training at high intensity in short time

With HIIT you train your entire body every workout in a short period of time. You’re improving your cardiovascular endurance with an interval training. Short periods of maximum exertion are alternated by short periods of rest and there is no compromising of the technical correct and  safe execution of your exercise. What does this mean concretely?

-         It is a short intensive interval training designed to enhance the endurance of the heart and lung system.

-         Short periods of high-intensive effort are interspersed with short periods of rest or low-intensive effort. For example, 30 seconds maximum effort and 30 seconds rest. The intensity of the effort is at least 50% of what you can give, but you’re aiming for 100% where you have everything in your body feeling like it’s on fire! The amount of rest required depends on the duration and intensity of the effort and your own condition (and condition of the day!)

-         In principle a period of HIIT takes no longer than 20 minutes.

-         HIIT training comes in many forms such as sprints, burpees, jump  squats, pushups and situps.

Important for results

1. Variety

Your body gets used to a certain exercise and workload and always needs more or something  else to keep making progression. Therefore, it is important to constantly stimulate your body in different ways. Vary regularly the number of repetitions, the amount of weight, the type of exercises, the order in which  you train your muscles and your resting periods. Therefore, no training should be the same! Exaclty what we do in CrossFit.

2. Professional coaching and self- monitoring

Because of the high intensity of HIT and HIIT, it is important to ensure good professional coaching. A personal coach can advise you which HIT or HIIT is most suitable for your body and your level. That can prevent injuries and overtraining.

In addition, the following applies: Every body is different and reacts differently to training. That is why it is important to monitor your progress. What works for one, doesn’t necessarily works for the other. A small adjustment of your workouts can make a big difference. Qualified professional coaching by certified coaches is key, especially if you have a history of injuries, or a higher risk of chronic diseases. NL Actief Prevention Centers can offer tailor made training programs to suit your needs.

Create your own health!©