Your HIIT Workouts May Be Affecting Your Entire Fitness Routine. Here’s How

These efficient routines could be doing more harm than good.

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It’s no secret why HIIT tends to top our list of the most efficient workouts. They’re shorter, more intense, and generally give you more bang for your buck, so to speak. But the go-to workouts have been getting a bad rep recently, according to researchers.


First, we learned that HIIT can actually cause damage to your gut bacteria, and now, we’re being told that the often favorite sessions are also likely to turn you against all other kinds of exercise.

Research coming out of Iowa State University shows that while HIIT workouts are undoubtedly speedy, they are actually unsustainable as a regular form of exercise. Because they’re short, we often tend to think that we can just “squeeze in” a quick HIIT session before work or at lunchtime—and this could be our downfall.

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“The message of ‘squeezing it in’ perpetuates the idea that exercise is a chore,” says Panteleimon Ekkekakis, who headed up the research. “We want to break down the association of exercise as punishment, as something unpleasant, something to tolerate or a bitter pill you have to swallow.”

Instead, researchers suggest that it might be more beneficial to reprogram how we think about these workouts, especially if we’re just starting out on our fitness journey.

If you’re a workout novice or are breaking into the fitness world, looking at your sweat session as a chore and as something you have to do, rather than as something you’re excited to accomplish, could mean that you’ll fairly quickly turn your attitude away from not only HIIT workouts, but all fitness methods.

Your workout isn’t a duty or just another errand. Instead, it’s something you’re lucky to do and able to give your body, and seeing it as that could determine how successful it ultimately is.

In need of an an extra boost of motivation? (who doesn’t?), let these fitness influencers show you exactly how to boost your love of those seemingly impossible workouts. You’ll fall in love with it, one sweat at a time.