Add a few minutes of high intensity interval training (HIIT) to your run, and yes, you'll zap calories—fast. But you don't have to reach gasping-for-air breathlessness to reap the fat-torching benefits of HIIT.
Experts at Equinox gyms have developed a new interval series they call balanced interval training experience (BITE). Where traditional HIIT focuses on short, intense bursts of speed followed by very easy recovery, BITE uses a less taxing sprint pace paired with a less leisurely recovery period. On a treadmill, this means maintaining a balance between speed, incline, duration and recovery that results in less impact, putting less stress on your hips, knees and ankles than harder, faster intervals do. But you won't sacrifice the efficient fat-melting benefits of a pure HIIT approach, says David Siik, Equinox running coach and creator of the training program.
You can try the BITE formula in the gym's newest treadmill class, Precision Running, rolling out now at locations nationwide. Or sample the class on your own with this 12-minute routine, developed by Siik and Lashaun Dale, Equinox's senior programming manager.
The 60-second intervals alternate between adding speed and incline, with recovery periods in between. Warm up; then start 1 mph slower than your most intense sprint speed. You'll spend less time at the most challenging pace while gaining the same benefits.