Stephanie Thielen by Stephanie Thielen

HIIT workout

With the holiday season in full swing and the hustle to get end-of-the-year projects complete, it’s easy to stray from our regular exercise habits. Who has time for exercise when we are shopping for presents, cooking for family, running errands, traveling and attending parties? You. You have time for exercise. If your regular routine of going to the gym is getting trumped by this busy time of the year, try a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout that offers both fitness and calorie-burning benefits. Plus, you’ll work up a good stress-reducing sweat in a short amount of time.

High-intensity interval training features alternating bouts of all-out high-intensity exercise effort and short rest periods for a specific number of sets. These short, intense bursts of activity give you an incredible aerobic, anaerobic, strength and power workout all rolled into one. During a HIIT workout, your body metabolizes fat for fuel and after your workout your body will tap into fat stores for the energy. This makes HIIT one of the best ways to maximize caloric burn in a short amount of time. All you need is 15 to 30 minutes to reap all of these benefits of a HIIT workout.

No fitness equipment necessary for this 20-minute HIIT workout, but make sure you have water close by and a timer to keep track of the work/rest exercise intervals.

This workout includes two sets of three exercises repeated four times in row. Each exercise in the set is performed for 20 seconds followed by a one-minute rest. When set #1 is complete, move on to set #2. 

HIIT workout

High Knee Running: Run in place, bringing your knees up toward your chest and pumping the arms as quickly as you can. 

High knee running

Diagonal Jump-ups: Begin in lunge position, with your right foot forward and your body turned toward the upper-right-hand corner. Push through both feet, jump up and land in a lunge position with the left foot forward and your torso facing the upper-left-hand corner.

diagonal jump ups

Burpees: Squat and place both hands down on the floor. Jump or walk back to high-plank position and perform one push up. Jump or walk your feet back to the squat position and immediately jump up with arms overhead.




Ankle Touches: Run in place, turning your knees slightly outward, bringing the inside of the leg up toward the chest and reaching your hands to touch the inside of your ankles.

ankle touches

Squat Jumps: Lower down into a squat, swinging your arms back behind you. Immediately jump up, swinging your arms up toward the ceiling.

squat jumps

Push-up + Jump In/Out: Begin in quadruped position, with your hips over the knees and shoulders over the hands. Curl up onto the toes and lift the knees slightly off the floor. Jump or walk the legs back into high plank and perform one push up. Jump or walk the legs back into the elevated quadruped position.

push up

push up


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