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Exploring “Reduced High Intensity Training”

You have probably heard of High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT. It is a traditional training protocol of about thirty minutes and is performed at very high intensity, with recovery intervals. Hence its name.

I would like to introduce you to REHIT: Reduced Exertion High Intensity Training. It’s a fairly new exercise protocol derived from HIIT.

An interesting concept

The REHIT protocol is a training session nine minutes in length composed of two twentysecond sprint sessions sandwiched between three-minute recovery periods.

A recent study from Western Colorado University performed an eight-week study of the REHIT protocol, and the results were quite astonishing. Researchers saw a 12 per cent increase in cardiorespiratory fitness, and 62 per cent decrease in the metabolic syndrome score (MetS).

In the REHIT study, the twenty-second sprints were done at very high intensity on a bike, and depleted the muscle glycogen stores, causing a chain reaction in the body that elicited positive changes at different levels.

Can REHIT replace your regular workout? The researchers actually said no (and I agree). But it can be included a few times a week in an overall training plan. If you have time constraints, this fits easily into a tight schedule.

Give REHIT a try

A bike set up on an indoor trainer, or a stationary spin bike, is the perfect place to give REHIT a try this winter. The protocol is three minutes at low intensity, then twenty seconds of all-out high resistance, followed by three minutes of recovery… and repeat once more; after nine minutes, you’re done.

The key is very high intensity followed by sufficient recovery periods. Can this be applied to different activities? I don’t see why not. It will be interesting to see more research on this emerging protocol.

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