Why HIRT is HIIT’s newest competitor

Why HIRT is HIIT’s newest competitor

by Rachel Foo 31 Jan 2020

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is known for its short intense bursts of performance followed by short periods of rest. For the general population of fitness enthusiasts, HIIT is a crowd favourite when it comes to stripping away fat and improving physical conditioning in a minimal amount of time. The issue at hand however, is maintaining that near-maximum level of effort as training wears on. With the exception of professional athletes, most people encounter this issue practically all the time, which leads to a drop in the effectiveness of the workout. This leads us to high-intensity repeat training (HIRT), which manages to address this shortcoming.


With HIRT, the focus is on maintaining the effort and power in each interval. Rest is key when it comes to completing the movement without compromising on either the effort or power.


Here are some tips on how to make HIRT work for you:


  • Take the name seriously

HIRT was formulated with the objective of completing every set in mind. If you find yourself unable to repeat the set as well, either rest longer or end your training session.


  • Work out your rest intervals and monitor it

For every 10 seconds of work, you should give yourself around 45 seconds of rest. If you find yourself more fatigued than usual, consider increasing your rest periods.


  • Maximum effort and intensity

When it comes to HIRT, you need to be able to execute each set with maximum effort and intensity. Choose exercises you are confident of executing well. Ensure that these exercises come with the least risk of injury. Some examples are, swimming, rowing, pedalling on an assault bike, or sled pushes. When you’re ready to move to another level, consider kettlebell swings or snatches.


  • Tailor your training volume to your goal

Ask yourself: what do you wish to achieve with HIRT? If you want to build endurance, of course, training four to five times a week will help you achieve that. However, if you wish to work on your maximum strength, you might want to consider bringing your training days down to around one or two times per week.


Staying active is an important aspect of our lives. However, before you dive into something, know what your goals are. Do your research in order to determine that path is suitable for you. For example, if you’re looking to maximise relative strength, HIRT will not cut it as the primary focus of HIRT is that of conditioning. Lastly, when it comes to training, always listen to your body. Knowing when to push and when to dial things is the difference between sustainable progress and injurious setbacks.