The nitty GRIT-ty about high intensity interval training from Les Mills, the creators of the HIIT work out GRIT™

In recent research conducted by Les Mills it proved that the LES MILLS GRIT™ Series helps reduce the risk of cardio disease, improves cardio fitness, promotes weight loss and improves functional strength.

It also found that inserting two LES MILLS GRIT™ Series workouts into a full exercise schedule in place of one hour of cardio increased improvements in cardiovascular, fitness and strength and decreases in body fat, triglycerides and waist circumference by more than two times the normal rate.

The key points of the research highlighted the following results;

  • A decrease in Triglyerides – type of blood fat that increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • An increase in Oxygen consumption resulting in an increase of aerobic fitness.
  • Body fat reduction by around 2.1%. A resulting waist circumference reduced by 2.7cm.
  • An increase in back strength by 21.9%
  • An increase in leg strength by 15.7%

It has also been shown that by taking part in the Les Mills GRIT™ programmes you will increase your intensity tolerance levels, allowing you to put more effort/work harder for a more sustained period of time therefore making your workout more effective without increasing your training time.

Dave Kyle, head trainer for Les Mills UK gives this example session: 

INTRO

The aim of the workout is to complete the whole session in a maximum of 30 mins. The workout is broken down into 4 key exercise groups. Recovery per exercise group is short and designed to keep the intensity of the workout high, whilst still allowing the opportunity to recover, a key principle in this time of training. 1 minute recovery should be taken between each exercise group.

Ideally the session should be completed 3-4 times a week and for maximum effect can be added to current exercise regime. This should be kept up for a period of 6 weeks.

Key benefits - a minimum decrease in body fat by 2.1% whilst effecting an increase in overall lean muscle mass. A 10% increase in back strength, 6% increase in leg strength. A decrease in Triglycerides.

Example session: 

Aim of this session is to get the body moving through a full range of movement. This sets up an effective neuro muscular pattern, thus helping to prevent injury whilst conditioning the body for the main compound movements in the workout.

Accelerated Warmup - (Neuro Muscular Pre-Conditioning)

  • Plate Clean & Squat x 8
  • Plate Clean & Squat with a Press x 8
  • Plate Clean and Squat with a Press and Heel Lift x 8

15 Sec recovery

  • Backwards Stepping Lunge x 8
  • Backwards Stepping Lunge with Overhead Press x 8
  • Backwards Stepping Lunge with Plate Overhead x 8

20 Sec recovery

  • Squat Burpee with Pushup  x 8

10 Sec recovery

  • Squat Burpee with 3 x Pushup & Jump x 8
  • Squat Burpee with 3 x Pushup & Tuck Jump x 8

SESSION 2

Aim of this session is to hit the big muscle groups hard by incorporating compound exercises. This will increase post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) therefore burning of more bodyfat over a longer period of time. This will also enhance muscle growth by increasing the bodies lactic threshold.

Upper Body Compound Training (Metabolic Resistance Training - MRT)

2 Super sets

  • Deadrow x 12
  • Upright Row x 5
  • Hang Clean x 7

15 Sec recovery

2 Super sets

  • Wide Row x 12
  • Upright Row x 5
  • Hang Clean x 7

30 Sec recovery

  • Power Press 7 x 2
  • Power Pushups x 7

30 Sec recovery

  • Power Press 7 x 2

15 Sec recovery

  • Power pushup x 10

Lower Body compound Training (Lower Body Strength & Power Supersets)

2 Supersets

  • Plate Squat x8
  • Plate Squat with Shrugs and Heel Lift x 14
  • Drop Squat Jump x 8

15 Sec recovery

  • Backward Stepping Lunge with Power Knee Lift x 8
  • Power Lunge x 14

30 Sec recovery

SESSION 3

A combination of power and anaerobic threshold training to push the body past its limits to ensure gains will be made;

Power training – the ability to exert maximum muscular contraction in an explosive burst of movement.

Anaerobic Threshold - Your bodies anaerobic threshold is the point during exercise when your body must switch from aerobic to anaerobic metabolism. During this phase of training the body burns stored sugars to supply the additional energy needed, and lactic acid is produced faster than it can be metabolized.

Strength Agility (Frontal Plane Power Training)

2 Supersets

  • Lateral Squat x 8
  • Isometric Lateral Squat x 8
  • Isometric Lateral Squat with Plate Overhead x 8
  • Lateral Leaps x 8

15 Sec recovery

Maximum Effort (Anaerobic Threshold Training)

  • Burpee Pushup (2 pushups) x 4
  • Burpee Pushup with Tuck Jump x 4

15 Sec recovery

  • Burpee Pushup with Tuck Jump (3 x Pushups, 2 x Tuck Jumps) x 4

30 Sec recovery

  • Burpee Pushup (2 pushups) x 4
  • Burpee Pushup with Tuck Jump (3 x Pushups, 2 x Tuck Jumps) x 4

Core (Integrated Core Conditioning)

2 x Superset

  • Power Climber x 14
  • C Crunch with Plate x 8

15 Sec recovery

For more information on Les Mills, visit the website or if you’re interested in becoming a Les Mills instructor please get in touch with Lifetime by visiting their Les Mills instructor course page.

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