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What Is High Intensity Training ? – The Ultimate Guide

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High intensity training is completely different to your normal bodybuilding workouts, most bodybuilding workouts involve low – moderate levels of effort and longer more frequent sessions. It is also completely different to the HIIT cardio popularised in 2010: Find Out More Here. Whereas high intensity training is a form of strength training where each exercise is done with a high level of effort/intensity with brief and infrequent sessions. It focuses on the amount of weight/time and number of reps your muscle is exposed to tension, where it seems to stimulate your body to produce an increase in size and muscular strength.

When near exhaustion most HIT advocates will do static holds (where you may not be able to do another rep, but you hold the weight very still for a longer period) and negative reps (when you lower the weight in a controlled manner slowly) to further exhaust the muscle. Until you are no longer able to complete the exercise in a controlled manner your muscle will not be considered to be thoroughly exhausted.



The Guidelines For High Intensity Training

Number Of Sets: Only 1 set per exercise.

Number Of Reps: Generally for upper body exercises 6-10 reps and lower body exercises 12-20 reps, both done to failure.

Frequency Of Training: No more than 3 workouts per week for beginners (non-consecutive days) and if your more advanced you should be working out less and not more (one workout every 3-5 days), but with much more intensity.

Training Volume: Between 2 – 12 exercises that hits all your major muscle groups, compound movements such as squats and deadlifts are the best for this. If you’re very advanced you may benefit from lowering it to 3 – 5 exercises each session.

List Of All Major Muscle Groups

How To Progress: Once you are able to complete the highest number of reps (10 for upper body/20 for lower body) in perfect from then increase the resistance used during the exercise by 5%. The easiest way to increase resistance would be to add more weight.

Speed Of Each Rep: A slow controlled movement where you are able to move the weight smoothly both eccentrically and concentrically. Avoid any bouncing, jerking or yanking of the weight if you find yourself doing any of this just lighten the load.

Range Of Motion: Full range of motion is the most effective.

To conclude high intensity training can be used for a wide variety of exercise goals if you correctly implement all the guidelines above you will not only add more muscular strength/size, but you will also improve your cardiovascular and metabolic conditioning along with many other benefits to your health/fitness. There are also pre-workout supplementation strategies that you can utilize to increase the intensity especially if you need that extra boost of energy or motivation from a long day’s work: Click Here For More

If you have personally tried this form of training before or if you have any more questions on HIT leave a comment below.

8 thoughts on “What Is High Intensity Training ? – The Ultimate Guide

  1. I really need to get into this high intensity training asap ! Like I have been slacking with normal training that I do on my own, but at least now I know where to come to get some tips when I am ready for some real training. One last thing, do you recommend that I follow your guide at my current level ?

  2. I like your article and I have to agree that high-intensity exercise is the only way to go ! It is the only method that allows you to see a massive improvement in the weight that you lift/push as well as fat loss. However, I have to say that I have to prepare myself mentally to do it and that’s because it’s hard work and my mind would prefer to do a gentle workout. Could you give me any tips on how I can overcome this mental barrier ?

    1. There are many ways you can overcome this mental barrier Amber. The first would be too try and listen to your favourite gym music with headphones on so you can zone in. The second would be to take a pre workout supplement as that will give you much more energy and help make you feel stronger. If none of that helps it’s always a good idea to get some professional help whether it be from a trainer at your gym or online caohc like me.

  3. Hey Andrew,

    Your description about the HIT training is explained very well.

    People often tend to confuse this with the HIIT cardio like you mentioned, but it’s still great for you.

    I have tried the GBC or “German Body Composition” training, made by coach Charles Poliquin and its very good too, Probably you consider to put it on your website too :).

    Thanks a lot for the post.

    Keep up the hard work man, awesome job !

    1. Hey Giancarlos,

      I’ve never heard of the German body composition training, but it sounds very interesting so I will need to learn more about it.


  4. As an advocate of HIT this is a great explanation on high intensity training. Many people want to get on with it, but do not properly understand the significance or the details of high intensity training.

    Your guidelines will help beginners a great deal. This will also prevent serious injuries, as some people think they should do it everyday. Obviously, your guideline says this shouldn’t be the case.

    Great post !

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