You ladies have been hearing me talk about Metabolic Conditioning and HIIT training a lot recently. I love these types of workouts because they provide so much bang for our buck in terms of fat burning and cardiovascular benefits, while still helping to build muscle. But what if you’re just starting out? What if you don’t think you’re physically capable of doing HIIT training
Today, I want to share of few ways you can still incorporate this type of training, even as a beginner!
Metabolic Conditioning is an important tool in fitness. It increases athleticism, improves physique, and increases work capacity. With MetCons, you alternate short bursts of very intense exercise (such as 10-20 sec of sprinting) with periods of lower intensity (such as 1 min of walking).
- The higher intensity periods create a metabolic demand that is very effective for long-term fat loss and overall conditioning.
- The lower intensity periods let you recover and use the aerobic energy system.
If you are new to working out, you can modify MetCon workouts for your current fitness level. Start reaping the sweat-inducing benefits with these beginner-friendly tips:
1. You don't have to go all out at the start: That image of a professional CrossFit athlete doing gravity defying box jumps is enough to intimidate anyone from trying an interval workout. But, almost any explosive movement can be modified until you're ready to take your workout to the next level. For example, doing a reverse lunge instead of a jump lunge if you're not ready for jumps. Focus on mastering these moves first, and add more explosive ones when you're ready.
2. Form is more important than reps: It’s more important to focus on your form and ensuring that you're doing your reps correctly than it is to be focused on speed to start off. Follow the golden rule, “form first, speed second.” Focus on quality, not so much quantity. So, if you can only do five perfect squats in 30 seconds, pat yourself on the back for focusing on form.
3. Yes, you can modify in the next round, but you still have to try: Even if you can't sustain multiple rounds of perfect push-ups, it's OK. You can modify a move as rounds progress — just push yourself each round to at least do one complete rep, even if your muscles are shaking and you're not sure if you can. For example, start with a regular push-up and even if you only do two, I want those two regular push-ups from you before you drop down into modified push-ups, and then continue the reps from the modified position. You will still build strength, even if you are doing modified exercises.
4. Rest means rest: Don't worry, those 30 seconds or 1 minute go by quick. Make sure to rest during your rest period in order to get your heart rate back down. That way, you'll be able to tackle the next round with that same intensity you desire.
5. Start Small: Start out with one MetCon workout per week with the ultimate goal of working yourself up to three times per week. Keep it simple with a 10 minute “As Many Rounds/Reps as Possible” (AMRAP) or “Every Minute on the Minute” (EMOM) workout, then build from there.
I hope these tips are helpful in getting you started with MetCon & HIIT training! If you are just starting or restarting your fitness journey, check out my best selling workout plan, The Fresh Start. It’s a self-led six week program of beginner based workouts that incorporate HIIT, Strength Training, and Carb Cycling to produce amazing results! The program is on sale this week for $49! Click here to learn more and read the amazing results my clients have had with this program!