If you’re on the hunt for training techniques that prioritize speed, cardio and actually keeping you entertained and engaged, you can’t go wrong with High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts. These workouts, which alternate between high intensity and low to moderate intensity recovery periods, are considered particularly effective for your metabolism and your endurance (though, to be fair, Low Intensity Steady State (LISS) workouts can do this too) by allowing your body to get the best of aerobic and anaerobic exercise.
Best of all, HIIT-style exercises are ideal for when you’re dealing with the day-to-day time crunch that might keep you from going to the gym or doing a more time-consuming workout — you can do some impactful HIIT work anywhere, with little to no equipment and clock it all in at under a half hour. Though some HIIT workouts are definitely designed for more seasoned pros (and you definitely want to be mindful to avoid stress injuries and not over-exert yourself when you’re just getting into them — work your way up to anything too difficult for you!), there’s still a good amount of HIIT videos for beginners that give you a chance to try out this workout style for yourself.
30 Minute Full Body HIIT
This workout from fitness influencer Heather Robertson is just a half hour but hits every muscle you’d want to target.
This full body HIIT workout will target every major muscle group and get that heart rate up so you will build strength and burn fat at the same time,” Robertson writes. “No equipment needed in today’s bodyweight HIIT workout so all you need to do is follow along.”
The moves and pace are easy to follow and the music is chill and not going to annoy you into turning the video off if you don’t have your own playlist at the ready, which is always a bonus.
15 Minute Low-Impact, Squat-Free Low Impact HIIT
This one requires some light dumbells, but is super helpful for people dealing with bad knees or the inability to jump for some reason. Pahla B. Fitness’ workouts are great for people who want to find workouts that might work to their unique body situations — particularly if you’re dealing with menopause-related issues or any of the glorious battle scars that come with living in an aging body.
A Body Positive HIIT Workout
A major turn-off in the online fitness space can be that it doesn’t feel inclusive. With many fit-fluencers offering the same vibe that feels very thin, white and likely to sell you a “wellness tea” that’ll wreck your bowels, it’s hard when you’re a beginner to feel like the workout was made with you in mind. Diverse Personal Training is an account we can’t recommend enough for feeling like you’re among friends who have the same wellness goals as you. Designed to keep you motivated but also mindful of what feels right and good for your body, this workout is full of fun moves that will keep your heart pumping and your body sweating without discomfort.
Plus, like all of these, it’s simple and fun enough that you’ll totally want to repeat the exercise when you’ve got some free time — which is never a bad thing!
A version of this story was published March 2020.
Before you go, check out our favorite at-home workout gear that won’t break the bank: