3 New Variations To Interval Training That Will Help You Build Strength & Mass

Written By: Todd Kuslikis
October 23, 2013

*This is a guest post by Travis Stoetzel, founder of TheGarageBuiltBody.com.

So, pretty much in this day and age everyone under the sun knows what interval training is.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years or so, you’ve probably heard about High Intensity Interval Trainingat some point right?

As most people like to call it, we’ll use “HIIT” for short.

Either way, if you know what “HIIT” is or not, I’m going to talk about 3 different ways you can make normal “HIIT” type workouts into what I like to call, “INSANE intervals” that will not only help you get shredded, but will also help you build more strength and muscle overtime.

But real quick before we go into more detail on how to transform your normal HIIT sessions into INSANE Intervals, I want to talk about the different type of HIIT session.

The first type of HIIT training is when you do one movement only.  The most common of these HIIT set ups is with sprints.  A quick example of this is doing a sprint for 10-30 secs ALL OUT then resting for 30-60 secs.   You’d repeat that for anywhere from 5 to maybe 15 sets total.

The second type of HIIT set up I want to talk about is the circuit style HIIT session where you’d do anywhere from 2, 3, 4, maybe even 5 different movements in a timed circuit set up similar to the first set up.  So for this example, you might do movement 1 for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 secs, then do movement 2 for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds, and so on…

Either way, the main focus with either type of set up within your HIIT workouts needs to be on INTENSITY.

Short, all out bursts of INTENSITY.

So, when it’s “work time” it means you’re going ALL OUT 110% effort and since your focus is on HIGH intensity, one of the key benefits you’ll also receive from properly executed HIIT training is that of saving TIME.  In other words, since there’s so much effort involved with each work period, you don’t need to train for very long when doing HIIT.

That’s one of the BIGGEST benefits.

Bottom line is, INTENSITY is what will yield you the BEST results possible with HIIT training, but this is also where a lot of HIIT type workouts drop the ball.

With this quick article, I want to show you how to properly PROGRESS circuit style HIIT intervals for the BEST results possible.

I like to call these style intervals, INSANE Intervals and these are just one of the many different type of unique program design methods I use within my new system, The Garage Built Body.

The main issue with intervals is that most people can’t sustain a high enough intensity with how most HIIT workouts are set up so in order to help people build up to this, there needs to be a progressive type set up to it.

Instead of doing what most HIIT workouts do, I attack the intervals with a progressive approach and I supply 3 different ways to do this in which I go into next.

3 New Variations To Interval Training That Will Help You Build Strength & Mass

#1 – Progressive Movements

Instead of using the “one movement fits all” method to programming, you must have progressions.  As you can see within the sample interval above, for squats, it starts with unweight bodyweight squats and progresses all the way up to a double rack kettlebell squat.  The same goes for ALL of the movement.

Movement progressions are key especially if you can’t start at a certain level with a movement, there should always be an easier option to choose from to suit your fitness abilities.

Overtime, as you get more efficient with movements, you can progress in difficulty, which will produce more results overtime.

#2 – Progressive Time

This is a biggie when it comes to properly progressing intervals overtime.  As I mentioned in the beginning of this article, intervals are always set up in such a way that you’ll have a work interval and a rest interval.

One of my favorite approaches here is to start off with a work to rest ratio of 1:1.  This means the work period will be the SAME as the rest period (example – 30 secs work / 30 secs rest)

Now, if you’re badly deconditioned or just starting out, you could start off with a 1:1.5 or 1:2 rest ratio (example: 30 secs work / 60 secs rest)

Just like with progressing movement difficulty in point #1, you can increase difficulty by changing the work/rest ratio. overtime

My favorite sets ups are with 30:30 / 40:20 / 50:10’s.  50/10’s get to be BRUTAL 😉

#3 – Loading

Now, after you’ve gotten good with your movement progression and have steadily increased you work/rest ratios overtime, you can then focus in on heavier loading.  This would be the final progression in making your Interval training INSANE and is also where we can start to focus in on more strength rather than just pure conditioning.

For example, instead of trying to get in as many reps as you can at a light weight in 30 or 40 secs, go into the interval with the focus on just getting 5 or 6 heavy reps within that time frame.  Since you know you have planned rest within the interval, you can do this with great success and it’s a different way to attack your interval training.  Plus, when you lift heavy enough during your intervals, you’ll promote strength and muscle gain.

So there you go!

3 great ways to make your normal HIIT sessions into INSANE INTERVALS.

Now, before I let you go, I wanted to let you test out a INSANE INTERVAL session so that you can experience the “Insanity” (NO not like the program “Insanity” – this is WAY better)

“Day 6 – INSANE Interval Day” taken from The Garage Built Body Training System,

1A) 3 Rounds – Intervals

  • Bodyweight Squats –> KB Goblet Squats –> Double KB Front Squats
  • Push Ups –> Hand Release Push Ups –> Push Ups on KB’s / DB’s
  • Recline Row – Neutral Grip –> Feet Under Anchor Point –> Feet Elevated Recline Row
  • KB or DB DBL RDL –> DOUBLE KB or DB RDL –> Increase Weight
  • Plank –> Feet Elevated Plank on Box –> Plank Jacks

***Interval Progressions:  30/30   40/20   50/10  (Circle Which Level You Do)

***The (–>) symbol represent a progression in movement starting at easiest to hardest.

Check out the Demo Video Below:

Want more INSANE training setups?

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Show/Hide Comments (2 comments)
L
2 Comments
  1. Alan

    Todd, this is the second garage video I’ve tried to watch with Travis. I like to leave my emails till the end of the working day. I am sorry to say his voice is too monotonous and he talks too much that it sends me to sleep; he is over 6 minutes into his video before showing an exercise.
    Anyway glad to get a preview of his work because I definitely would not buy his programme .

    Regards
    Alan

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Alan,

      Thanks so much for the feedback. Everyone has different styles. Its good to fine a person that you really resonate with. I appreciate the constructive criticism. 🙂

      Peace!

      Todd

      Reply
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