What is HIRT (High Intensity Resistance Training) and How Should You Use It?

December 11th, 2009 Posted in Conditioning, Workout Routines 62 Comments »

What is High Intensity Resistance Training (HIRT)?

Originally written: November 20, 2009
Updated: December 11, 2009


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High Intensity Resistance Training (HIRT) is essentially resistance training for fat loss, and like HIIT, it really is a big deal. HIRT training is the most effective way to increase your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), increase your Exercise Post Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), and burn calories at the same time.

When using HIRT you will execute several exercises together (sometimes called a super-set or giant-set), for a certain number of reps per set, for a certain number of minutes, without rest.

Along with HIIT, HIRT is a useful tool when avoiding endurance cardio while trying to lose fat, and it actually increases muscle mass more effectively than HIIT.

HIRT training will give you the following benefits:

  • Increase metabolism for up to 36 hours post-workout
  • Outperform aerobic exercise in fat loss studies
  • Maintain muscle mass on a low calorie diet
  • Build muscle mass on a moderate to high calorie diet
  • Minimize fat gain on a high calorie diet
  • Burn more calories than endurance cardio
  • Increase muscle density
  • Improve anaerobic endurance
  • Improve aerobic endurance

You may supplement this info with the post titled, “What is HIIT?

Browse the Table of Contents for this Post

What is HIRT? HIRT Theory BMR and EPOC
Who Can HIRT Benefit Who Should Avoid HIRT Design a HIRT Routine
Sample HIRT Training Splits Sample HIRT Training Routines  
HIRT Routine #1 HIRT Routine #2 Olympic HIRT Routine

The Theory Behind HIRT

The important things to know about HIRT are:

  • HIRT workouts help maintain muscle mass when following a low calorie diet
  • HIRT workouts outperform diet and aerobic exercise in fat loss studies
  • HIRT workouts increase metabolism for up to 36 hours

The principles of HIRT are:

  • Full body workouts using sets of 5 to 15 reps
  • Pushing through the lactic acid burn
  • Utilizing a variety of combo-sets (super-sets, tri-sets, giant-sets, etc…)
  • Utilizing compound exercises
  • Focusing on the largest muscle groups

Most important, we have to stay true to the two rules of HIRT:

Rule #1 about HIRT: Don’t talk about HIRT. er… no, that’s a rule for a different club I attend on Saturday nights… ah, I’ve already said too much…

Seriously though:

  1. You must maximize the intensity of each set. That means pushing it until you collapse or complete the drill. No resting or slowing down before the time limit is up.
  2. You must maximize the intensity of each workout. Use all the time available to you, to complete as much work as possible. This is the only way to realize the maximum metabolic and muscle retention benefits of HIRT.

BMR and EPOC

As I mentioned before, along with burning calories through exercise, two of the most important factors in exercising to lose fat, are increasing BMR over the long term, and increasing EPOC per workout. Let’s learn a little more about BMR and EPOC, shall we?

Why do we care about BMR?

Your BMR describes the base metabolic rate for your body. It tells us how many calories your body burns at rest. Burning more calories at rest means you will lose fat faster or gain fat slower (if your daily calorie intake is too high). Improving BMR is simple: when you have more muscle mass, your body has a higher BMR.

Increasing your BMR will help you burn more calories over the long term.

Why do we care about EPOC?

Your EPOC describes how quickly your metabolism returns to your BMR after exercise. Because it deals more with the aerobic energy system, HIIT is more effective at increasing EPOC than HIRT, but not by very much. When targeting fat loss, we want to focus on workouts that increase EPOC as well as BMR.

The higher we can pump the EPOC after each workout, the more calories we will burn in the short term.

Who Can Benefit From HIRT

Anyone who wants to lose body fat while keeping all of their hard earned muscle mass, or anyone who wants to minimize fat gain while attempting to gain muscle mass. Alongside HIIT, HIRT should be a vital component to any serious fat loss plan.

HIRT would be useful for people who:

  • are looking to elevate their metabolism (BMR) long term
  • are looking to maximize short term fat loss through resistance training
  • are looking to keep as muscle as possible during a cutting phase
  • are looking to minimize fat gain during a bulking phase
  • are looking to increase aerobic endurance
  • are looking to increase anaerobic endurance
  • are looking to burn more calories on a daily basis
  • are looking to supplement their HIIT workouts with additional fat burning exercise
  • are athletes who participate in a sport such as boxing, MMA, soccer, basketball, football, wrestling, etc…, who need to increase muscular endurance in 5-10 minute bursts, while minimizing body fat

Who Should Avoid HIRT

Unlike HIIT, there are virtually no people who should avoid HIRT. Grasping at straws, the few people for whom HIRT might not be the best solution include those who:

  • are not cleared by their doctor to begin a high intensity exercise routine. Check with your doctor before starting HIRT.
  • are overzealous. You can’t use HIRT 3-4 times a week, and strength training or HIIT 3-4 times a week. Even though HIRT is not neurologically as taxing as HIIT or strength training, you still must rest between workouts.
  • are looking to maximize strength gains. Excessive HIRT and HIIT workouts will slow down strength gains.
  • are looking to increase speed. Because no sprints or max effort attempts are included in HIRT, speed will probably not be affected.

Designing a HIRT Training Routine

HIRT can be used for either cutting or bulking, usually maintain muscle mass while decreasing bodyfat, but also to minimize fat gains while increasing muscle mass. HIRT is also somewhat effective at improving aerobic endurance and even more effective at increasing anaerobic endurance.

As always, your diet is still 75% responsible for determining how these goals are achieved. Manipulate calorie intake and macronutrient ratios to gain muscle or lose fat according to your goals.

These are the guidelines I will use for creating a HIRT workout:

  • Each HIRT workout must be a full body routine.
  • Sets of 5 to 15 reps will be used. Lower reps to focus on muscle gain, higher reps to focus on muscular endurance.
  • Each HIRT workout will use super-sets, tri-sets, or giant-sets.
  • Each HIRT exercise will be a compound exercise focusing on the largest muscle groups.
  • Each super-set should last 8-10 minutes.
  • 60-90 seconds rest between super-sets.
  • No rest within a super-set.
  • All exercises should be executed explosively – meaning as fast as possible while maintaining good form.

Three Sample H.I.R.T. Training Splits

There are thousands of ways you can integrate HIRT into your workout routine. You can use full body workouts, a 5 day split with HIRT at the end of your strength training, you can go HIIT-less to avoid sprinting, you can focus solely on HIIT and HIRT for max fat loss. You are only limited by your own imagination.

You can choose to implement several kinds of HIRT splits:

  • Priority: fat loss

    Day 1: 45 minutes of HIRT
    goal – maximal intensity resistance and endurance training

    Day 2: 25 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal intensity cardiovascular training

    Day 3: 45 minutes of endurance cardio
    goal – anaerobic recovery and aerobic endurance training

    Day 4: 45 minutes of HIRT
    goal – maximal intensity resistance and endurance training

    Day 5: 25 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal intensity cardiovascular training

    Day 6 & 7: Off

  • Priority: fat loss, but maximize muscle retention

    Day 1: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 2: 30 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal intensity interval training

    Day 3: Off
    goal – recovery

    Day 4: 45 minutes of HIRT
    goal – maximal intensity resistance and endurance training

    Day 5: 30 minutes of full body resistance training plus 20 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal strength resistance training and maximal intensity interval training

    Day 6 & 7: Off

  • Priority: gain muscle and attempt to lose fat at the same time

    Day 1: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 2: 30 minutes of HIRT plus 20 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal intensity cardiovascular training and maximal intensity interval training

    Day 3: Off
    goal – recovery

    Day 4: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 5: 30 minutes of HIRT plus 20 minutes of HIIT
    goal – maximal intensity cardiovascular training and maximal intensity interval training

    Day 6 & 7: Off

  • Priority: gain muscle

    Day 1: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 2: 30 minutes of HIRT
    goal – maximal intensity cardiovascular training

    Day 3: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 4: 30 minutes of HIRT
    goal – maximal intensity interval training

    Day 5: 45 minutes of full body resistance training
    goal – maximal strength resistance training

    Day 6 & 7: Off

Three Sample H.I.R.T. Workout Routines

Sample HIRT workout #1

For this workout, you will have to change equipment and/or stations to move to each new exercise, so your best bet will be to plan ahead and keep all the equipment you will need for the super-set at one station. This will keep rest down between sets.

Execute each super-set for 10 minutes without rest.
Rest for 180 seconds between super-sets.
The workout should take 45 minutes including a 5 minute warm-up and stretching after the workout.

Super-set A:

  1. 10 reps of deadlifts with 20% of your 1 rm
  2. 5 clapping pushups
  3. 5 chin ups
  4. 10 ab wheel roll outs

Super-set B:

  1. 5 jump squats
  2. 5 pull ups
  3. 10 bench presses with 20% of your 1rm
  4. 5 windshield wipers


Super-set C:

  1. 5 one leg split squats with each leg
  2. 10 inverted rows
  3. 10 push ups
  4. 5 fold ups with a half second pause at the top

Sample HIRT Workout #2

For this workout, you will have to change equipment and/or stations to move to each new exercise, so your best bet will be to plan ahead and keep all the equipment you will need for the super-set at one station. This will keep rest down between sets.

Execute each super-set for 10 minutes without rest.
Rest for 180 seconds between super-sets.
The workout should take 45 minutes including a 5 minute warm-up and stretching after the workout.

Super-set A:

  1. 5 push ups
  2. 5 inverted rows
  3. 5 jump squats
  4. 5 cable crunches


Super-set B:

  1. 5 chin ups
  2. 5 pistol (or one leg) squats
  3. 5 Russian twists with a medicine ball
  4. 5 push ups on the medicine ball


Super-set C:

  1. 10 skipping lunges
  2. 5 ab wheel roll outs
  3. 5 dumbbell or kettlebell swings with each arm
  4. 5 neutral grip one arm dumbbell or kettlebell rows

Olympic HIRT Workout

For this workout, you will move from one exercise to the next without any rest at all, since you won’t have to change equipment. Each movement will set you up to transition to the next movement, so that you are only executing one rep of each exercise per set and then flowing directly into the next rep of the next exercise.

This workout mainly utilizes Olympic lifts. Use really light weight or you might die, but you will probably puke anyway.

Execute each super-set for 10 minutes without rest.
Rest for 180 seconds between super-sets.
The workout should take 45 minutes including a 5 minute warm-up and stretching after the workout.

Super-set A:

  1. Power Clean
  2. Push Press
  3. Eccentric portion of Romanian deadlift (down)
  4. 5 reps of bent over barbell rows
  5. Concentric portion of Romanian deadlift (up)
  6. Touch the bar to the floor and repeat.


Super-set B:

  1. Deadlift
  2. Hang Clean
  3. Push Press
  4. Back Squat
  5. Back Push Pres
  6. Touch the bar to the floor and repeat.

Super-set C:

  1. Deadlift
  2. Hang Clean
  3. Push Press
  4. Overhead Squat
  5. Barbell Abdominal Roll Out

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62 Responses to “What is HIRT (High Intensity Resistance Training) and How Should You Use It?”

  1. Fran says:

    Hey steve, another great article. Two questions, first one; how can i include these workouts into a regular full body routine?? i was thinking maybe doing them on a recovery week, which is usually the 4th week of any routine im doing. the other question, does the workouts only last for 10 minutes?? if thats so, when you are doing HIRT, you are supposed to lift only for 10´??
    Thanks

  2. Sputnik says:

    Hey Steve,
    I put HIRT to the test and it’s very challenging, how many times a week would you suggest doing this type of training….my goal is to drop about 30lbs also would you combine it with HIIT…..Thanks
    Sputnik

  3. Haley says:

    HI Steve,

    Great Stuff, very interesting to learn as this is quite different form what regularly we’re taught.

    I am thinking for sure you can boost your metabolic rate to the max by doing this, but just thinking how this mixed-around principle can help gaining muscle weight compared with the focused 5×5 training session on one muscle group. For HIRT, not much is focused and probably all you do is 2 reps on your chest and you move onto the other part. This works as efficient as focusing on up mid low chest and outter and inner etc on one training day as conventional wisdom taught? would love to know the underlying principle. cheers

    Haley

  4. [...] What is HIRT – High Intensity Resistance Training – And How Should You Use It? (projectswole.com) [...]

  5. Aaron says:

    Hi Steve,

    Great info. Can HIRT and HIIT also be combined with the 3×5 workout?
    i.e. – maybe a program similar to this:
    M – 3×5
    T – HIIT
    W – HIRT
    R – HIIT
    F – 3×5
    Are there benifits to an approach like this?

    Thanks!

  6. shavneel says:

    Very good. The key is to find the optimum balance between workout and dieting. Dont forget to get lots of sleep. I usually find 10 hours good.

  7. Mario Garza says:

    This looks intense! Never tried it before, but I sure will in the future. Right now I’m concentrating on strength training with a 5×5 routine.

    Mario

  8. [...] I found a post on HIRT or High Intensity Resistance Training over at Project Swole. It’s a very interesting strategy to approach fat loss while at the [...]

  9. Karena says:

    I am Psyched!!! I am going to apply this to the gym today. For myself, and some of my clients. I will let you know how it goes.

  10. Karena says:

    Its intense……I Love it!!! Im actually a bit sore in a good way. Ive modified it for my own boot camp class. What a gift. Happy New Years!!!

  11. Jeff says:

    Hey, I’m wondering if your suppose to use the same workout routine every time. I really like the workout #1, does that mean I should use it every time i workout?

  12. Will says:

    Steve!

    I would like to say thank you for putting together such a comprehensive helpful website! It’s one of the best I’ve seen so far. I used to run cross country a couple of years back and getting back into the gym again does take some butt kicking.. I had a question well I’ve been trying to figure out what is the best workout for training to be a cop. I’m thinking of HIRT while also lifting weights.. That does that mean I have to totally cut carbs out of my diet? I read also the 10 tips to get threaded but I thought with HIRT & HIIT and balanced amount of carbohydrates are needed?

    • Steve says:

      For cop training, I’d probably favor some HIIT as you might need to sprint if you’re out tackling thugs, but also strength training because you will need to be strong and functional. I’d say two strength training sessions, one HIRT session, and two or three HIIT sessions a week.

  13. Jeff says:

    Oh ok, and uhm, in the sample training splits, whats the difference between full body resistance training and HIRT?

    • Steve says:

      Sometimes HIRT is full body resistance training. Anytime you use a HIRT workout that works your whole body, it is full body resistance training. However, it is not full body strength training because HIRT focuses on fat loss rather than strength gains.

  14. Jeff says:

    Oh, sorry to bother you so much, but I’m wondering how long I could use this workout routine? Is the maximum 2 months?

  15. James says:

    Hey Steve, I’m wondering if say,I did superset 1 from sample 1 after I go through it once, do I rest before I do it again or without rest I do it again for 8-10 min?

  16. Scott says:

    Can Sample 1 or 2 be applied to any of the HIRT splits for example fat loss and retain muscle or gain muscle and some fat lossin the routines.

    It says full body resistence training is that just a regular full body workout like seen in your other routines?

    Id the HIRT is only 30 mins would it be set up like this:
    3min WU
    6min Giant set
    3min active rest like walking
    6min Giant set
    3min active rest like walking
    6min Giant set
    3min cool down and or streching

    Thanks. :)

    • Steve says:

      All samples can be applied to any workout goals. I would tend towards heavier weights and lower reps like Willie Albert’s workout, when trying to lose fat with your workout routine, but using HIRT to help maintain muscle and strength. Then I would tend towards lower weights and higher reps (like samples 1 and 2) when trying to build muscle on a strength training routine, but using HIRT to keep lean. Does that make sense?

  17. Scott says:

    I am looking to keep the muscle I have while trimming a little fat to see more defenition. Which HRIT should I use. From the above it looks like it is combined with some HIIT and some normal resistence training. That was in the catagory fat loss and muscle retention. Maybe I am just confused.

    • Steve says:

      The thing with HIRT is that it can include virtually anything and it goes by many names. You haven’t heard much about HIRT because HIRT is sometimes called circuit training, weight training, tabata training, sometimes HIRT workouts can even be classified as HIIT. What is most important is that you understand how to put your workouts together, and that you are clever enough to change up the exercises while understanding HOW to train to accomplish your goals.

      If you are looking to lose fat and retain muscle/strength, you should try a workout plan that doesn’t specifically target muscle or strength gains, something like a full body workout routine that uses 5-8 rep sets. Then use either HIIT to melt the fat off, or HIRT with heavier weights to increase your metabolism and promote strength/muscle retention.

      It will be more important to eat right than it will be to over-analyze your training routine.

  18. Scott says:

    Makes sense!! Thanks Steve!

  19. Scott says:

    When it says maximal strength resistene, does that mean High weight low reps? Almost like a 5×5 routine. Basicall keep rep amounts in the 5-6 range.

    Thanks just tring to get my routine together.

    • Steve says:

      True maximal strength is a 1 rep max; a max effort. When I refer to the goal of the workout being ‘maximal strength resistance training’ somewhere in the middle of this post, I just mean high weight, low reps – 5×5 or 3×5 like you said.

  20. Scott says:

    So how is this for lossing fat/retaining muscle
    Day 1.
    Barbell back squats – 3 sets x 5 reps, 1 set x 3 reps
    Dumbbell bench press – 2 sets x 5 reps, 1 set x 3 reps
    Barbell bent over rows – 3 sets x 5 reps
    a) Standing military press with bands – 3 sets x 5 reps
    b) Seated calf raise – 3 sets x 5 reps
    a) Hammer curls – 3 sets x 7 reps
    b) Skull crushers – 3 sets x 7 reps
    (From the werewolf workout)

    Day 2. 25mins HIIT (Sprints)

    Day 3. Off

    Day 4. 45min HIRT

    Day 5. Barbell bench press with bands – 3 sets x 5 reps, 1 set x 3 reps
    Stiff leg deadlifts – 2 sets x 5 reps, 1 set x 3 reps
    Pull ups, weighted if possible – 3 sets x 5 reps
    a) Push press – 3 sets x 5 reps
    b) Standing calf raise – 3 sets x 5 reps
    a) Dips – 3 sets x 5 reps
    b) Standing alternating dumbbell curl – 3 sets x 5 reps
    (From werewolf workout)

    6. Off

    7. 25min HIIT (Sprints)

    How does this look. I think I will build some strength and get some good fat burn here!! By the way than you for your help and putting upwith all the questions!! :)

    • Steve says:

      I’d probably switch that day 7 workout to day 6 and take day 7 off completely. Also not sure how sprinting will feel the day after squat day. I might do this:

      1) Same as above.
      2) 45 minutes HIRT
      3) Off
      4) 30 mins HIIT sprints
      5) Same as above.
      6) 30 mins HIIT sprints
      7) Off

      The reason is that day 5 doesn’t include much leg work, so it will be good for you to sprint the day before and the day after. Also, since day 1 includes squats, I’d rather see a HIRT workout that also involves some leg work but not sprints. I was going to rip on your lack of leg training, but you made up for it by including 2 sprint workouts. Consider adding some jumping drills on either HIIT or HIRT day.

  21. Scott says:

    I will change the day up. I also added on Day 1 1 more superset w/weighted Ham&Back extentions w/situps or crunches.

    On Day 5 I added a superset with Decline situps with rotations w/leg raises.

    I had to get deadlifts in since they are such a good full body work out and the only other time I would be doing them is in the HIRT routine and that is with very light weight.

    Thanks again for the help. You and your site rock!!

  22. Scott says:

    I did sample 1 i think I did each segement for 8 mins and still was burnt at the end!! Wow!

  23. Fran says:

    Hey steve, just started today a hirt routine 3 days a week taking the middle days off… i ve measured and weighted myself to check for before/after results… i ll tell you how it went in a month or so. Just for now, the first day has been terrible, really had to push myself…

  24. Hans says:

    Hey Steve, im looking to bulk up and lose fat at the same time. I’ve been told this is very difficult and that I should burn the fat first before attempting to gain lean muscle mass. My question is: Can I perform HIRT exercises after a full body resistance training workout?
    ie. 5-10 mins after a workout, a simple 20 mins HIRT?
    If not, im aware I can perform HIIT after the resistance training, but should I consume a post work out shake (Carbs and protein) after the cardio session (HIIT) if my goal was to lose body fat still?
    Im also a bit confused as I’ve been informed not to use the same muscle group two days in a row, looking at a few samples you suggested – the workouts implement the same muscle group 2 days in a row. For example monday full body resistance training and the following day will consist of a full body HIRT. Will this allow muscle to develop?

  25. Jarrod says:

    Hey Steve, I’ve got 3, MAYBE, 4 days a week to train, and I really want to maximize on the time that I have. I’m trying to knock off about 30 more pounds but I really don’t want to lose all of the muscle mass that I’ve gained. Can HIRT, like say, rotating Sample #1 and Sample #2 every week, or somthing like it, help me acomplish this? It seems like my body doesn’t respond to the standard cardio like it did a year ago, and my lifting routine is still effective but I think it could be better. Can this be effective 3 days a week?

  26. [...] plus a warm-up and stretching after, for a total of 45-50 minutes. This workout is modified from ProjectSwole.com.Group A:5 push ups5 inverted rows5 jump squats 10 V-sit crunches Group B:5 chin ups5 pistol squats [...]

  27. Danny says:

    I’ve done the werewolf routine for muscles gains three times and now I have just moved on to the werewolf routine for strength gain. The strength gains routine uses HIRT in between every heavy weights day. Why would you do this if in this article you say that someone shouldn’t do HIRT if they are looking to maximize strength gains?

    • Steve says:

      There are a couple reasons for this.
      1) The strength routine itself is a 3 day split on M/W/F but I really want to keep the muscles stimulated all throughout the week.
      2) The lower weight and higher reps for the HIRT sets will actually help you recover faster.
      3) Strength gains are slightly different than muscle gains since muscle gains come from rebuilding tissue, while strength gains are more a result of neurological adaptations. Therefore we’re not worried about burning some of those extra calories in HIRT sessions. Of course, that is overly simplified and not 100% accurate, but you get the gist.
      4) The HIRT routines are mostly for abs, but also I do advocate some bodyweight exercises for the rest of the body.
      5) Besides, 20 minutes twice a week is not going to keep you from getting stronger.

      • Greg says:

        Im doing fine at building muscle. but i can barely see my abbs, i can see them fine but it gets worse the lower you go on my abbs. so with this info, are you saying that after my normal routines or maybe on my days off. that i can do just 20 mins of HIRT twice a week and i will see more of my abbs without losing my muscle? thanks for letting us pick your brain steve! also is 30mins to much?

  28. Hi says:

    Hey,

    I have been wanting to do 4 to 5 days strength traning with hiit. Your Build Muscle/Lose Fat plan seems it for me. So the Questions would be: How about tabata as opposed to hiit/hirt? And how about hiit/hirt days before strength training days – essentially inverting the workout days?

    I’ve been wondering if tabata and hirt are interchangeable. I’ve seen most people whine about it being too much, and maybe its true. But tabata once, twice a month at most?

    • Steve says:

      You can do tabata once a week or more. It all depends on how long your tabata sessions run and how many muscle groups are directly hit. Cardio before strength training is not the best solution, but it will still work. I prefer to have all my energy for lifting, then finish off with cardio when I’m already tired.

  29. Jeff says:

    Hey steve, i was just wondering, is the HIRT example 1 easier than the HIRT example 2?

  30. sean says:

    Hey Steve, was starting to do the HIRT twice a week after a full body workout. How hard am I suppose to go the first day Im wondering if it is okay to work out sore during an HIRT workout and not risk injury.
    Sean

  31. Pat says:

    duude this entire site is genious! it helps so much I refer to it all the time. This and the HIIT article really cleared things up for me! and going to apply these to my workout routine. Keep up the good work. thanks.

  32. JZ says:

    Hey Steve, thanks for the site and all the responses. My situation is a bit different. I got hurt knees so I can’t do any HIIT. However, I can still do HIRT, and would want to lose max fat while keeping max muscle. What type of routine would you suggest? Thanks.

    • Steve says:

      Choose any routine and swap out HIIT with HIRT. Also consider adding 30 minutes of endurance cardio on to the end of a regular weight training session, mostly because it’s low impact.

  33. Jemarcus says:

    Hi Steve
    i’m trying to bulk up and gain serious muscle. At first i was skinny and now since i been in the weight room at school i have got bigger and more cut, but the thing is that i weight 125 pounds but people often think i’m weigh between 150 and 170 pounds so yeah i kinda buff in a way but i need to get bigger by add about 30 pounds of muscle for football and i need to know what workout plan will work best for me to follow thanks a lot.

  34. Mike says:

    I’m trying to drop some weight while simultaneously keep some size and I was wondering if this would be a good routine (of course I know I need the diet right).

    Day 1 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIT running
    Day 2 – HIRT
    Day 3 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIT running
    Day 4 – HIRT (Tabata style)
    Day 5 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIT running
    Day 6 – 30 mins cardio
    Day 7 – rest/stretch

    Would this be effective or over training?

    • Steve says:

      That looks like a reasonable plan. I think maybe all that HIT (HIIT?), HIRT and the day 6 cardio might be too much. I’d rather see you rest on Day 4 and replace ’30 mins cardio’ with Tabata HIRT on Day 6. I also think you could benefit from performing your 20 mins HIIT running in the morning if you lift in the afternoon, or do HIIT in the afternoon if you lift in the morning. Maybe sure you don’t lift for longer than 45-50 mins or you could possibly end up overtraining with all that extra training.

      You hit the nail on the head when you said ‘I need the diet right’. Diet is responsible for around 75% of your fat loss. By keeping a strict diet you might be able to eliminate some of those HIIT and HIRT sessions.

      • Mike says:

        Thanks for the reply, so if I understand you correctly it should be more like this:

        Day 1 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIIT running
        Day 2 – HIRT
        Day 3 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIIT running
        Day 4 – Rest
        Day 5 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIIT running
        Day 6 – HIRT (Tabata style)
        Day 7 – Full Body Weights/20 mins HIIT running
        Day 8 – Rest

        Thanks again, love the site

  35. Michael says:

    really enjoy the HIRT workouts and I have been thinking of reversing the gain muscle section. Please let me know what you think of this routine as a way to drop a few pounds quickly all while adding a little muscle along the way.

    Monday – morning 20 mins stair master/evening hirt
    Tuesday – morning 20 min HIT/evening full body lift
    Wednesday – morning 20 mins stair master/evening hirt
    Thursday – morning 20 min HIT/evening full body lift
    Friday – morning 20 mins stair master/evening hirt

    Would this be effective or overkill? I would be taking Saturday as a day of some stretching and Sunday is a total rest day.

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