HIIT for an At-home Workout

Working from home makes it hard to stay on top of your workout schedule. But remember, you don’t need a full hour to make a positive effect on your body. Personal trainer and yoga instructor Tamara Weiss recommends adding in a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) session whenever you have a few spare minutes. Below are two four-minute mixed interval combinations to choose from or try all four together.

Lower Body

Brazilian Lunge

Start in an athletic stance. Lunge backward with the right foot, keeping the left knee directly over the left foot. The fingertips can lightly touch the ground for support if needed. Lift the back foot and return to the standing position. Repeat on the other foot.

Quarter-Turn Squat

From an athletic stance, lower down into a squatting position. Driving through the heels, jump up and turn to land, facing to your right. Perform three more times until you complete the circle and return to the starting position.

Brazilian LungePerform each round for 20 seconds with 10-second rests in between:
Round 1: Brazilian lunge
Round 2:
Brazilian lunge
Round 3:
Quarter-turn squat
Round 4
: Quarter-turn squat
Round 5:
Brazilian lunge
Round 6
: Brazilian lunge
Round 7:
Quarter-turn squat
Round 8:
Quarter-turn squat

Upper Body and Core

Wood Chop

Start in an athletic stance with your feet slightly wider than hip width and your hands in a prayer position in front of the right shoulder. Lower into a squat position while bringing the hands down to the left knee. Drive through the heels and return to your starting position.

Dolphin Push-Up

Start in a forearm plank position with the shoulders directly over the elbows. Walk your feet as close to your elbows as possible. Keeping the core engaged the whole time, walk the feet back to the starting plank position.

Wood Chop with Medicine BallPerform each round for 20 seconds with 10-second rests in between:
Round 1: Wood chop
Round 2:
Wood chop
Round 3:
Dolphin push-up
Round 4
: Dolphin push-up
Round 5:
Wood chop
Round 6
: Wood chop
Round 7:
Dolphin push-up
Round 8:
Dolphin push-up

Tamara’s Top HIIT Tips

Warm up to prevent injury. Walk for 3 to 10 minutes or hop on a stationary bike. Another option is to practice the exercises at a slower pace to rehearse proper form.

Get cleared for vigorous movement. Before performing high-intensity cardiovascular activity, please check in with your doctor. Modify any movements to accommodate physical limitations.

Perform at maximum force, power, strength and speed. The point is to go all-out for a short amount of time. Once you’ve perfected form, go as hard as you can.

Perform HIIT in moderation. Because the intensity is high, don’t perform these workouts too often. In general, incorporating two to three non-consecutive days of HIIT workouts into your routine will allow enough recovery time, while delivering excellent results.

Take time to cool down. Perform the same activity you chose for your warm-up at the end of the session, or try a few simple stretches. This will help your body recover from the quick movements.

Press Play: HIIT List

High-intensity workouts take a certain mind-set—it’s all about giving 100 percent in bursts. One of the worst things that can happen during a HIIT session is after getting into your groove, feeling good, and then hitting your next intense interval right when your music shuffles to “Hello” by Adele. You’ve committed to running this interval, you can’t stop and switch the song, so now you find your mind and body battling through an 85-beats-per-minute (BPM) song, when the ideal for heavy cardio is more like 150–180.  Avoid this awkward moment next time and put together a pre-selected HIIT playlist with some of our suggestions.

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