How Often Should I Do HIIT With Weight Training?


High-intensity interval training, or HIIT as it’s more commonly known, is a popular and effective form of exercise. HIIT is great for burning fat and calories, but can you start doing HIIT while still weight training?

You should do HIIT two to three times per week with weight training while taking 24 hours of rest between workouts. It’s important to space out your HIIT sessions to prevent injury, fatigue, and inefficient training. It’s also okay to do HIIT in the morning and then a weights session at night.

HIIT and weight training are both intense forms of exercise, and you shouldn’t combine them unless you know what you’re doing. In this article, I’ll tell you everything you’ll need to know to do HIIT with weight training in a safe and responsible manner. 

Can I Do HIIT and Weights on the Same Day?

Weight training is the best way to build up strength and muscle. HIIT is an effective way to burn fat and lose weight. So, is it counterintuitive to do HIIT and weights on the same day?

You should avoid HIIT and weight training on the same day if you are aiming to build strength. An academic study showed that HIIT training could reduce performance while weight training as HIIT causes residual fatigue. 

Residual fatigue will hamper the efficacy of your weight training as you will struggle to complete full sets while training.

HIIT training can be completed on the same day as weight training if you aim to improve conditioning and burn calories. However, you should rest during exercise to reduce fatigue. The best way to do this is by taking on an evening and morning workout. 

Is It Better To Do HIIT in the Morning or Evening?

If you have a busy life schedule that is already full of work, family, and social commitments, it can be not easy to find time to exercise. HIIT training fits perfectly with a busy schedule as it takes less than an hour and provides you with excellent results. However, what time of day is best to do your HIIT workout? 

The best time of day to complete a HIIT session depends on whether you are a morning person or not. If you are a morning person, avoid going to a HIIT session in the evening as your sleep will likely be disrupted. However, if you are an evening person, you can go to a HIIT class in the morning or the evening and see similar results. 

HIIT sessions are, by definition, high-intensity workouts. Some people may struggle to find the motivation for intense exercise first thing in the morning. If you struggle with motivation in the mornings, you should choose an evening workout instead.

The benefits of a morning HIIT session can go beyond your body. Studies have shown that exercising early in the day can enhance cognitive abilities and problem solving throughout the day. A British Journal of Sports Medicine study proved that you would experience these mental improvements by regular morning exercise. 

Should You Do HIIT Twice in the Same Day?

If you are serious about getting into better shape, you may be considering two workouts per day. Working out twice per day can have many fantastic benefits for your physical and mental health, but what about two HIIT sessions per day?

Training HIIT twice in the same day is not recommended. High-intensity training puts your body into a state of stress. Healthy levels of stress are suitable for weight loss and conditioning, but too much exercise can cause strain and injury. 

It’s recommended that you leave at least 24 hours of rest between HIIT sessions to prevent injury and provide you with enough time to recover. 

Does HIIT Burn Belly Fat?

As it is more commonly known, abdominal adiposity or excess belly fat is one of the most common areas that people target who wish to lose weight.

Excess belly fat can have adverse health effects and a negative effect on your self-confidence and body image. Unfortunately, you can’t just exercise one area of your body if you are attempting to lose weight, but you can do the correct type of training to see the results you are chasing. This is where HIIT comes in. 

High-intensity interval training has proven very effective at burning belly fat. HIIT sessions will reduce your total fat mass in your abdomen, according to a study completed in 2018. 

HIIT sessions are a fantastic way of getting into shape and losing weight, particularly in the abdominal area. 

Who Shouldn’t Do HIIT Workouts? 

HIIT is increasing in popularity every year, with more and more people opting for intense training over other cardio workouts. HIIT is more effective for weight loss and conditioning than lower intensity workouts. As a result, HIIT provides you with both short and long-term effects if appropriately completed. 

While there are numerous excellent benefits to starting HIIT sessions, HIIT may not be the best way to exercise for everybody. Some people have health conditions that vigorous exercise can agitate. 

Here’s a list of people who should avoid HIIT: 

  • Injured people
  • Pregnant women 
  • People with heart conditions
  • People living with osteoporosis
  • Immune suppressed people
  • Beginners to exercise

If you fall into any of the above categories, you should inform your doctor and any gyms before thinking about starting HIIT to avoid any accidents, health issues, or injuries. 

Injured People

When recovering from an injury, you should avoid strenuous exercise until you have fully recovered. Intense exercise like HIIT will put a strain on your body. The stress caused by HIIT could agitate your injury and set you back on your path to recovery. 

As always, when returning from injury, consult medical professionals before starting exercising again. Your doctor will likely recommend returning to light and low impact training such as gentle swimming first. You will then have to build back the strength around the injury before attempting more vigorous exercise. 

Pregnant Women

Exercising while pregnant is a healthy and safe practice as long as you don’t have a complicated pregnancy and avoid specific movements and exercises. 

Many of the exercises completed in a HIIT session are not safe or suitable for pregnant women. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that pregnant women avoid jumping, jarring movements, and swift changes in direction as there is an increased risk of injury doing these exercises. 

There are some HIIT workouts available online specifically for pregnant women. These workouts will avoid risky exercises so you can continue your high-intensity training long into pregnancy.

People With Heart Conditions

HIIT sessions are all about giving it 100% for a short burst. This puts a strain on your heart as your muscles will be using a considerable amount of oxygen to keep moving. This extra demand for oxygen means that your heart has to pump harder and faster to meet demand. 

If your heart is already weakened or recovering from surgery, the extra strain caused by HIIT can have catastrophic consequences. To prevent injuries or medical emergencies, consult a medical professional before starting intense exercise when recovering from cardiac issues. 

Immune Suppressed People 

HIIT sessions can weaken your immune system if you complete too many sessions per week. Over 4 HIIT sessions per week will reduce the efficacy of your immune system, which can lead to you becoming sick. 

If you already have a weakened immune system, you should avoid high-intensity workouts as it could further damage your immune system. 

You should avoid HIIT sessions if you are feeling sick, as you may end up feeling even worse after training. 

Beginners To Exercise

You have to learn to walk before you can learn to run. This old saying is very true when it comes to HIIT. HIIT sessions consist of multiple exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, etc. If you don’t know how to do these exercises or if you have never done them before, a HIIT class will likely be too intense for you. 

You don’t need to be an experienced gym-goer to start HIIT, but you do need to have some basic knowledge before you start. You will need to be comfortable doing basic bodyweight movements like squats and lunges. 

Final Thoughts

HIIT training is an excellent way to burn calories and fat. This intense form of exercise should be completed about three times per week for maximum results. You can also do HIIT on the same day as weights training, but you should probably take a few hours of rest in between. 

HIIT can be completed in the morning or evening, depending on your preferences. HIIT is excellent at burning belly fat and improving conditioning. 

Not everyone can partake in HIIT training, so if you have a medical condition, injury, illness, pregnancy, or if you are new to exercise, consult a professional before starting HIIT.

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