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HIIT, or high intensity interval training, was designed to improve athletic performance, making athletes bigger, stronger, faster, and more explosive. This was accomplished by incorporating overload and specificity to training. Athletes would train at near maximal loads for fewer reps with longer recovery. A standard HIIT class is not this but is instead maximal reps, lower loads, shorter rest periods. Which is then technically HVIT, or high volume interval training. This is essentially what we've been doing in class. Is this inherently bad? No, but I'd like to make improvements and am inspired to do so after reading pieces like the following:

"...repetitive, timed, maximal or near-maximal efforts incorporating short or insufficient recoveries, a characteristic of many popular HIIT programs, may predispose individuals to overreaching or overtraining that can elevate oxidative stress and cellular damage beyond autophagy to suppress immune responses, and impair exercise technique. Which consequently increases the risk of musculoskeletal strain and injury."

Teaching in a class format has it's challenges. One of those is how to program a class for a variety of participants whom all have different baseline levels of fitness and strength. In our HIIT workouts, we have essentially been training in a method that aligns with HVIT, high volume interval training. We keep showing up with the same weights, working for 30-45 seconds, resting for 5-10 while in our sets, then resting for 2-3 minutes before beginning a new round of movements. Again, this isn't bad, I just think I can do better...

Enter VIIT, or varied intensity interval training. With this type of training we would have a block of near maximal lifts/movements and then a block of submaximal, slower movements, cycling between the two intensities for the duration of class.

This will be introduced to you in April, and I want to emphasize something:

You will be resting more. This doesn't mean your workout is less than. Think of it as a way to further challenge yourself on your working intervals. Can you move faster? Can you lift more?

Not much will change in our "HIIT" sessions, but what is changing is the programming and how we will now have variation between a super challenging block and one that is less challenging, cycling through. I look forward to programming in this new format and am excited to sweat with always!!!

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