HIIT Training Program

Want to burn fat fast while resting? Do aerobic exercises!

Aerobic exercises, or “cardiovascular exercises,” are dynamic activities that elevate heart rate and breathing. These exercises put your muscles in an “oxygen deficit” [1] state to promote blood circulation towards engaged muscles. Ultimately, your metabolism rate flares up, and your body burns fat fast!

“Aerobic” denotes that your body relies on oxygen to continue activity [2]. 

Aerobic exercises, like running, swimming, or cycling, engage large muscle groups in rhythmic, continuous motions. These exercises adapt cardiovascular performance to meet increasing oxygen demand in target muscle groups [3]. 

Aerobic Exercises Key Takeaways


  • Oxygen Utilization: Aerobic exercises rely on the body’s ability to use oxygen for sustained activity.
  • Cardiovascular Engagement: Engages large muscle groups, prompting the cardiovascular system to enhance oxygen delivery.


  • Holistic Health: Aerobic exercises are effective for overall health and well-being.
  • Calorie Burn: Effective for weight management through calorie expenditure.
  • Heart Health: Strengthens the heart, lowers blood pressure, and improves cholesterol levels.
  • Mood Enhancement: Stimulates endorphin release, reducing stress and promoting a positive mood.

Key Exercises:

  • Running: Engages major muscle groups and boosts cardiovascular health.

Suggested Read: Strength Training for Runners | Complete Guide, Benefits, and Mistakes

  • Cycling: Enhances endurance while targeting the lower body muscles.
  • Swimming: Full-body engagement with low impact on joints.
  • Jump Rope: Effective for cardio, coordination, and calorie burn.
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT): Combines aerobic exercises in short, intense bursts for efficiency.

Benefits of Aerobic Exercises:

Burn Calories Fast:

These exercises burn calories, aiding weight loss or maintenance when coupled with a balanced diet.

More Lung Capacity:

Regular aerobic activity enhances lung function, optimizing oxygen exchange efficiency.

Mood and Mental Health Booster:

Aerobic exercise triggers the release of endorphins, diminishing stress, anxiety, and depression while fostering a positive mood.

Increase Energy Levels:

Improved circulation and oxygen delivery result in increased energy and reduced fatigue.

Strengthen Your Immune System:

Regular aerobic exercise bolsters the immune system, reducing susceptibility to illness.

Manage Chronic Conditions:

Aerobic activities aid in managing and preventing chronic conditions, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and specific cancers.

Aerobic Exercises Target Following Muscles:

  • Quadriceps
  • Hamstrings
  • Glutes
  • Calves
  • Core

Running, swimming, or cycling involve rhythmic muscle contractions, which require more oxygen. 

Low Oxygen levels trigger cardiovascular adaptations to optimize muscle efficiency and endurance. 

For instance, running activates the quadriceps and hamstrings.

Cycling engages the quadriceps and calves. 

During this process, our brain releases endorphins to reduce stress and improve overall well-being. 

Consistent aerobic exercises are associated with toned muscles and improved endurance.

5 Most Common Aerobic Exercises for Beginners


  • How to Perform: Start with a brisk warm-up, then jog or run at a pace that elevates your heart rate.
  • Target Muscle Groups: Primarily engages the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and core.
  • Sets, Reps, and Duration: Begin with 3-4 sets of 20-30 minutes, adjusting intensity based on fitness level.

Jump Rope:

  • How to Perform: Jump continuously, keeping a good rhythm, and incorporating variations like high knees or double unders for intensity.
  • Target Muscle Groups: Works the calves, quads, hamstrings, and shoulders.
  • Sets, Reps, and Duration: Start with 3 sets of 10-15 minutes, gradually increasing the duration as endurance improves.

Suggested Read: Jumping Rope and Weight Loss: What Does Jump Roping Do to Your Body?


  • How to Perform: Ride a stationary bike or cycle outdoors at a moderate to high intensity.
  • Target Muscle Groups: Engages the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and glutes.
  • Sets, Reps, and Duration: Aim for 3-4 sets of 20-45 minutes, adjusting resistance for intensity.


  • How to Perform: Swim laps with various strokes, maintaining a steady pace.
  • Target Muscle Groups: Works the entire body, including the core, back, arms, and legs.
  • Sets, Reps, and Duration: Begin with 3 sets of 15-30 minutes, adapting based on swimming skill and fitness level.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT):

  • How to Perform: Combine short bursts of intense exercise (e.g., jumping jacks, burpees) with brief periods of rest or lower-intensity activity.
  • Target Muscle Groups: Varied, engaging multiple muscle groups throughout the body.
  • Sets, Reps, and Duration: Start with 3 sets of 15-20 minutes, adjusting work-rest intervals based on fitness level.

Program Overview: Aerobic Exercises HIIT

Warm-up (5 minutes):

  • Begin with light cardio exercises like jogging in place or skipping rope.
  • Include dynamic stretches for major muscle groups, such as leg swings and arm circles.

Workout Phase (20 Minutes)

1. Jumping Jacks:

  • How to: Start with your feet together and arms down. Jump up, spread your legs, and raise your arms overhead. Then, jump back to the starting position and repeat.
  • Intensity: 30 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 15 seconds of light activity (e.g., marching in place).
  • Repeat for 4 sets.

2. Burpees:

  • How to: Begin by standing, then squat down and place your hands on the floor. Jump your feet back, do a push-up, jump your feet back in, and explosively jump up with arms reaching for the sky.
  • Intensity: 40 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 20 seconds of light activity (e.g., jogging in place).
  • Repeat for 3 sets.

3. High Knees:

  • How to: Stand tall and jog in place, lifting your knees as high as you can with each step. Keep it brisk and controlled.
  • Intensity: 30 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 15 seconds of light activity.
  • Repeat for 4 sets.

4. Mountain Climbers:

  • How to: Get into a plank position and rapidly bring your knees toward your chest one at a time. Keep your body in a straight line.
  • Intensity: 40 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 20 seconds of light activity.
  • Repeat for 3 sets.

5. Sprinting in Place:

  • How to: Lift your knees quickly as if you’re sprinting but stay in one spot. Pump your arms along with your legs for an extra push.
  • Intensity: 30 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 15 seconds of light activity.
  • Repeat for 4 sets.

6. Plank Jacks:

  • How to: Start in a plank position. Jump your legs out wide and then back together, like a jumping jack, all while keeping your core engaged.
  • Intensity: 40 seconds of maximum effort.
  • Rest 20 seconds involving light activity.
  • Repeat for 3 sets.

Cool Down (5 minutes):

  • Perform static stretches for major muscle groups, holding each stretch for 15-30 seconds.
  • Include deep breathing exercises to bring down the heart rate gradually.

Suggested Read: 5-Minute Full Body Cool Down Exercises – 11 Ways to Relax Your Muscles

Program Notes:

Frequency: Perform this HIIT workout 3-4 times per week, allowing at least one day of rest between sessions.

Progression: Gradually increase the intensity or duration of the work intervals as your fitness level improves.

Listen to Your Body: Modify exercises if needed and pay attention to your body. If you experience pain beyond typical muscle fatigue, consult with a healthcare professional.

Results to Expect from Aerobic Exercises HIIT Training:

  • Get in better shape for longer, more energetic days.
  • Melt away calories and rapidly see fat loss.
  • Lose fat, not muscle, for a toned look.
  • HIIT involves Short but intense sessions leading to big results.
  • Burn calories even after you’re done.
  • Improve blood sugar regulation to combat insulin resistance health.
  • Adaptable Workouts that Fit various fitness levels and preferences.
  • Trigger endorphin release for a positive mood boost.
  • Reduce disease risks and improve health markers.

The Bottomline

Aerobic exercises and HIIT training improve your cardio fitness, burn calories fast, improve your mood, and provide long-term results for a toned, leaner, and happier you.

Enjoy the workout! 

Explore More Topics


[1] Aerobic Exercises – MyClevelandClinic

[2] Exercise and Oxygen Deficit vs. Oxygen Debt – OxygenPlus

[3] Aerobic Exercises – PhysioPedia