The Best HIIT Workout Guide For Total Beginners At Home

HIIT workouts have become a staple for anyone who wants to get a good workout in, without spending hours at the gym. HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training and it offers an endless amount of benefits. As a beginner, HIIT might sound a little intimidating. Not anymore! This HIIT workout guide will answer all your questions, so you can put your body to work and get results in as little as 8 minutes!

HIIT Workout

What is a HIIT workout?

A HIIT workout consists of a series of bodyweight exercises performed in short-burst- intervals, followed by a short, sometimes active, rest time. During work time, you must perform at 100% or as close to it as possible.

HIIT workouts can have various structures.

One of the most common structures is the 30 seconds on, followed by 30 seconds rest, repeated for 8-10 intervals.

Due to their intense nature, HIIT workouts are usually in the 10-20 minute range.

Like this? Pin it for later!

HIIT workout

Types of HIIT workouts

There are various types of HIIT workouts because you can implement the HIIT protocol in many ways. Here are some of the most common ones:

1. Tabata

Tabata is a type of HIIT workout, that is traditionally 4 minutes long. During those 4 minutes, you perform 8 rounds of one-two compound bodyweight exercises for 20 seconds, followed by a 10 second rest time.

Tabata workouts have a major impact on your metabolism and can keep you burning for hours post-workout. This is the perfect workout in a pinch.

HIIT workout

2. HIIT workout for runners

You can probably guess how this one works.

You can sprint for 20 seconds, at maximum effort, then rest for 20 seconds. Perform for 8 rounds for a total of 4 minutes.

You can also sprint for 30 seconds, rest for 30 or 15 seconds, and repeat for as many intervals as you can do in 10-20 minutes.

HIIT workout for runners

3. HIIT workout with weights

This type of HIIT is a bit more advanced but still worth noting. You simply grab a pair of dumbbells or any type of weight you may have and perform the exercises with them.

Adding weights to a HIIT workout can significantly increase caloric expenditure, as well as promote muscle gain.

HIIT workout with dumbbells

4. HIIT workout compound bodyweight

This type of HIIT consists of compound bodyweight exercises such as burpees, jumping jacks, jump squats etc.

This type of HIIT is highly effective and can be done anywhere.

It can typically last from 5-20 minutes. Some could go up to 30 minutes as well.

HIIT workout

HIIT workout benefits

HIIT workouts are extremely beneficial. They pack a powerful punch, in under 20 minutes. Here is a more detailed list of all the amazing HIIT workout benefits:

1. Burn lots of calories, in short amount of time.

2. Raise your metabolic rate.

3. Boost cardio-respiratory health.

4. Improved VO2 max, a measure of endurance that calculates the maximum volume of oxygen the body can use.

5. Makes you burn calories long after your workout is over

6. Burns fat, without losing muscle.

7. Can be done anywhere, without any equipment.

HIIT workout

How often should I do HIIT workouts?

So how often should you perform HIIT workouts?

HIIT workouts can be a great addition to your weekly workout routine.

Ideally, you should perform HIIT workouts 2-3 times a week. As a beginner, you can start with 1-2 HIIT workouts per week.

Since HIIT workouts can be highly taxing for your body, do NOT exceed 3 HIIT workouts/week.

How long should my HIIT workout be?

Since HIIT workouts demand 100% effort, they should be in the 10-20 minute range.

Again, assuming you are giving 100% of your effort during the work times.

HIIT workouts can last up to 30 minutes as well, but your work time and rest time will vary in order to compensate.

As a beginner, aim for 10-12 minute HIIT workouts.

Are HIIT workouts good for beginners?

HIIT workouts are highly effective for beginners.

First of all, they require very little time to be performed, without equipment.

HIIT workouts usually consist of some the most effective bodyweight exercises. As a beginner, HIIT workouts can be very informative and educational. It is a great way to learn all about these exercises as well as how to perform them without injuring yourself.

Beginners will also notice results fairly quickly since HIIT workouts can have such a massive, beneficial impact on your body.

HIIT workout for beginners at home SAMPLE

Here are a few HIIT workout examples for beginners at home:

1) 10 Minute Beginner HIIT Workout (2 rounds 30secs on, 30secs off)

  • Jumping Jacks
  • Squat Jumps
  • Side shuffles
  • Inchworms
  • Mountain Climbers

2) Tabata Beginner Workout (8 rounds – 20secs on, 10 secs off – 4 minutes total)

  • High Knees
  • Burpees

3) Runner HIIT Beginner Workout (10 rounds – 30secs on, 30 secs off – 10 minutes total)

  • Sprints

Frequently Asked Questions

How should a beginner start HIIT?

Start with a HIIT style of your choice, running, bodyweight or Tabata. Perform 1-2 workouts per week until you can work up to 3 workouts per week.

Remember to always listen to your body. If 3 HIIT workouts per week live you too tired and sore, dial it back to 1-2.

Always include a proper warm-up and cooldown, and stay hydrated before, during and after your HIIT workout.

What is the best HIIT workout for beginners?

The best HIIT workout for beginners is that one that you enjoy the best and can perform at 100% effort.

It can be running, Tabata, or bodyweight compound HIIT.

Is HIIT good for losing weight?

HIIT workouts are extremely effective for weight loss.

HIIT workouts can raise your metabolic rate, as well as keep you burning for hours after your workout.

Combined with a healthy nutrition plan, weight loss is pretty much inevitable!

Can I do HIIT everyday?

HIIT is a great, safe, and effective workout, but there’s no need to do it every day.

Aim for 2-3 HIIT workouts a week.

You’ll still reap the benefits and give your body time to recover properly.

If you enjoyed this blog post, check these ones out!

Final Thoughts

If you are a beginner and want to start exercising, HIIT is the perfect type of workout for you.

There are many types of HIIT. Some of the most popular ones are Tabata, bodyweight compound and sprints.

Start with 1-2 sessions per week, then slowly build up to 2-3 times per week.

Always include a proper warm-up as well as a proper cool down.

Combine HIIT training with a healthy nutrition plan and you can achieve weight loss and even lean muscle building.

Thank you for reading! Go get’em, fit babe!

Follow me on Pinterest and Facebook for workout tutorials and the latest posts!

Similar Posts


  1. I will try the tabata workout for a week and see if I can make it a routine. Thanks for sharing. I have learnt a new way of working out

  2. Thank you for sharing this very informative guide on HIIT workouts. I have been doing the workouts from time to time and always found it super effective!

Comments are closed.