High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and a Burpee Exercise Routine

Exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle along with good nutrition and adequate sleep. Exercising regularly produces biochemical changes in your body and helps prevent many chronic diseases. You don’t have to spend an hour running on a treadmill or an elliptical machine, you can simply use your own bodyweight as resistance and exercise using High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) to get a killer workout! We will use a Burpee exercise routine as an example.

High-Intensity Inverval Training is characterized by relatively short bursts of intense exercise followed by periods of rest. A 20 minute HIIT exercise routine can produce positive physiological changes in minutes instead of hours of just steady aerobic exercise. To use HIIT, you need to perform ten sets of: 30 seconds of ‘intense’ exercise; followed by 90 seconds of rest. This should be repeated three times per week. HIIT can be applied to any form of exercise you enjoy such as running/sprinting, cycling, rowing, swimming, calisthenics, etc. HIIT can be applied using fixed-in-place gym elliptical or cycling machines as well. HIIT can even be applied to walking if you prefer.

HIIT workouts burn more calories than traditional workouts, and this continues after the workout is completed. HIIT is a very effective and efficient form of exercise! According to research presented at the American College of Sports Medicine, just two weeks of HIIT can improve your aerobic capacity as much as taking part in endurance training for six to eight weeks.

How to Properly Perform HIIT Exercises (an example using burpees)

1. Warm up for three minutes. High step in place or do some jumping jacks.
2. At the three minute mark, begin to exercise as hard and as fast as you can for 30 seconds performing your  burpees. You will be breathing hard and maybe even gasping for breath. Maintain good form!
3. Recover for 90 seconds by just high stepping in place, but keep moving. Just slow to a comfortable pace.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 again (for a total of 10 sets).
5. Do some stretching exercises to maintain flexibility and warm down.

When you first start out, you may not be able to complete all ten sets of the exercise routine. Listen to your body and just do as many as you can. Work up to the ten sets!

How to Perform Your Burpees

Watch the following videos for the proper way to perform your burpees. It is an intense exercise that will pretty much work your whole body. Form is important so try to keep good form with the exercise. Click an image below to view the video.

Female Burpee Demo

Click on the image above to see a female demonstrating how to correctly perform a burpee.

Male Burpee Demo

Click on the image above to see a male demonstrating how to correctly perform a burpee.


1. Be mindful of your current fitness level and don’t overdo it when you first begin.
2. You may need to start with just walking. If you do, walk as fast as you can for 30 seconds without running.  Your arms should pump hard and fast. During the 90 second rest period, you should slow your rate to acomfortable walk.
3. You may find that three HIIT exercise sessions per week are too much in the beginning. If so, just do two sessions per week and work up to three. Don’t do more than three HIIT sessions per week as your body needs recovery time.
4. You would be wise to check with your doctor before beginning an intense exercise program to make sure you are safe to tax your body with such an exercise routine. Your doctor’s advise is important to heed as well!

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