|I have a bit of pet peeve when it comes to HIIT or INTERVAL WORKOUTS (or you might have heard these workouts described as TABATA).|
It’s when coaches say intense forms of exercise are the ONLY way to get results including…toning, fat loss, fitness, even preparation for your “birth marathon” etc
Oh and if you do a HIIT WORKOUT if you are “not going hard, you better go home !”
I’m sorry WHAT ???
The science behind HIIT workouts
See the thing is …training women at ALL stages of LIFE including trying to conceive, navigating pregnancy, returning to exercise post birth or a long hiatus and throughout motherhood is what I do. It is what I have done for over nearly two decades…and out of necessity and passion I have spent thousands of hours researching, learning and trying evidence and experienced based techniques.
Yep call me a nerd ? …but I base all my recommendations and fitness programming on science proven methods – that as a Mama of 3, I have also tested and tried myself.
Intense and depleting exercise is actually a form of stress and 99% of women I meet in today’s society are stressed….especially considering what 2020 has been like !
Why intense workouts inhibit fat loss…
Your body actually doesn’t know the difference between a 40 minute fast and furious workout and you being chased by a tiger.
This activates your sympathetic nervous system and your body gets flooded with stress hormones like cortisol. Cortisol production basically steals away from balanced hormone production and makes the brain think it’s “not safe”.…it also switches the body into craving glucose as you enter “flight or fight” mode ….and when this happens too often you inhibit FAT BURNING (and trigger those uncontrollable cravings for cakes, coffee and sugar + other hormonal concerns).
It’s why many women come to me post birth and say they are “training so hard” but are feeling bloated, bigger and more tired than before !
A safe and effective HIIT workout
Now I am not saying DO NOTHING.
What is so important for women of all ages is BALANCE.
As exercising to the point of exhaustion when you are already exhausted or stressed is not going to give you any long-term benefits !
Pre-kids I used to kill myself in the gym doing crazy hours of cardio and intense training because I thought I HAD to in order to see results. After 3 pregnancies, I have experienced not only my leanest, but my happiest, most fulfilling self through my method of movement.
This includes… discovering how to tune into YOUR OWN energy levels and programming a workout that meets your body where you are at. Then feeling energised during the workout and for hours even days afterwards (like pregnant Marion mentions below.)
HIIT needs moments of intervals + moments of rest
A HIIT workout stands for higher intensity interval training. Unfortunately too often the focus is on the “intensity” instead of the “interval”, the latter being important as REST during the workout is essential. Otherwise your workout will leave you injured, exhausted or limping around for the next few days…so another session can not even occur !
Intervals also mean, that you can “slice and dice” your exercise session so that that fits in with your schedule, ensuring it is still worthwhile regardless if you have 5 minutes, 12 minutes or 30 minutes
The focus should be on movement that is based on QUALITY not QUANTITY. My FABULOUS HIIT workouts are EXACTLY THIS. To ensure you can exercise safely and consistently during any trimester of pregnancy or any stage of motherhood (as long as you have medical clearance to move).
Why consistency is important!
As previously mentioned it not about the “quantity” of the workout is about the “quality” and “consistency” as when this happens.. RESULTS FOLLOW. Sounds simple but trust me it works !
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Dahlas Fletcher is one of Australia’s most respected and successful certified and experienced Pregnancy and Female Fitness Trainers. Her goal is to help you be the happiest, most fabulous version of yourself, inside and out.