The Complete Guide to Losing Belly Fat & Getting Stronger with HIIT | Chris Hinshaw

The Complete Guide to Losing Belly Fat & Getting Stronger with HIIT | Chris Hinshaw

Intro (00:00:00)

  • Chris Hinshaw, a coach who has worked with 36 CrossFit Champions, discusses how to craft a HIIT workout for people over 35 to improve their fitness and lose fat.

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Physical Decline Starting at Age 34 (00:02:00)

  • Physical decline begins around age 34, with a 1% annual decrease in V02 max and a 50% reduction in stride length between ages 40 and 70.
  • Loss of lean muscle mass, range of motion, and mobility contribute to this decline.
  • Preemptive measures, such as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), can help slow down the decline and maintain fitness and mobility.

Crafting a HIIT Workout Over Age 35 (00:03:49)

  • High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is an effective way to burn belly fat and get stronger for people over 35.
  • Uphill sprints or sled pushes are good ways to start a HIIT workout.
  • Active recovery, such as rowing at a low intensity, should be done after each HIIT interval to help clear fatigue and improve recovery.
  • HIIT workouts can help develop speed, strength, and power, while also teaching the body how to recover and clear fatigue under duress.

Why Hill Sprints are Better than Flat Ground Sprinting (00:08:08)

  • Hill sprints are more effective at building V2 Max than regular sprints.
  • Hill sprints are less pounding and safer than flat ground sprinting.
  • Flat ground sprinting is high risk and should be avoided until proper form is developed.
  • Warm up with 5-10 minutes of light cardio.
  • Do 8-10 rounds of the following:
    • Sprint up a hill for 10-15 seconds.
    • Walk or jog back down the hill.
  • Cool down with 5-10 minutes of light cardio.
  • Rest for 60-90 seconds between rounds.
  • Focus on proper form and technique.
  • Keep your core engaged and your back straight.
  • Drive your arms and legs powerfully.
  • Exhale forcefully as you sprint.

Chris' HIIT Protocol (00:09:28)

  • Do 8 rounds of 8-second sprints, gradually increasing to 8 rounds of 12-second sprints.
  • The 7th sprint should be the fastest effort, not the last one.
  • Maintain control of form during sprints, focusing on neuromuscular adaptation and proper motor movement.
  • Use a 12-15% incline on a treadmill to maintain velocity.
  • Monitor the distance covered during sprints to ensure consistency.
  • Stop the workout if you can't come close to the original distance covered in each sprint.
  • Listen to your body and recognize when you're done to avoid mediocrity and ensure performance.
  • Be aware that off days are more common as you age.

How Frequently Should You Do HIIT? (00:12:45)

  • HIIT is a low-volume approach that can be added to an existing workout routine.
  • The frequency of HIIT depends on the individual's fitness level.
  • For moderately fit individuals, HIIT can be done once every six workouts (once every three weeks).
  • HIIT is neurologically fatiguing and requires recovery time.
  • Recovery can be accelerated by changing the recovery protocol, such as adding slow-paced rowing after a strength workout.

How to Recover Properly Between Intervals (00:15:31)

  • Active recovery helps remove fatigue metabolites and improves fitness by targeting the muscles used in the previous workout.
  • The intensity of active recovery should be just below the lactate threshold, which is the fastest rate at which the body can remove lactate from the bloodstream.
  • The duration of active recovery depends on how long the individual was above the lactate threshold during the previous workout.
  • High-intensity interval training (HIIT) can lead to a high tolerance to lactate, but the body needs time to clear the accumulated lactic acid afterward.
  • Athletes should be aware of their lactate threshold and how long they can sustain a non-sustainable pace during HIIT to avoid requiring a longer rest period.

Your Type of Recovery Depends on Your Weakness (00:22:36)

  • Fast twitch dominant athletes have the superpower of firing fast twitch fibers quickly but struggle to shut them off.
  • Endurance athletes, on the other hand, can easily shut off fast twitch fibers but struggle to recruit them.
  • Fast twitch dominant athletes need to develop a reliable and predictable recovery protocol to lower their heart rate and prepare for the next interval.
  • This is because their recovery is naturally slower compared to endurance athletes.
  • A good recovery protocol involves focusing on actively recovering while moving and developing a consistent pattern.
  • The more an athlete practices their recovery protocol, the more their body will adapt and become efficient at it.

Lower Intensity for Fat Oxidation (00:25:15)

  • High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is not solely for fat loss.
  • Low-intensity exercise can burn more fat if you can recover and get back into fat oxidation territory.
  • HIIT is the catalyst for change, but the rest of the day is when fat burning occurs.
  • The focus should be on finding the minimum effective dose of intensity to avoid injury and optimize fat loss.

Burning Fat vs Carbs (00:27:58)

  • Zone 2 training is heart rate-driven and involves finding the intensity where half of the energy comes from fat and half from carbohydrates.
  • Losing the ability to utilize fat as fuel is detrimental, which is why the aerobic threshold line (Zone 2) exists.

Training in a Fasted State (00:29:27)

  • Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, a CrossFit Games champion, improved her metabolic efficiency by utilizing fat as fuel through fasted workouts.
  • Fasted training can enhance lactate clearance, activate fat-burning enzymes, and condition the body to conserve glycogen during exercise, leading to better endurance performance.
  • Leblanc-Bazinet's success in the CrossFit Games is attributed to her focus on endurance training and nutrition, enabling her to sustain a higher performance level than her competitors.
  • Building a base of fitness improves interval intensity, stamina, fat oxidation, and body composition, while also aiding in recovery and sleep quality.

Why Are You Not Losing Weight? (00:34:40)

  • Intensity should be optimal, not necessarily higher.
  • High intensity is good for afterburn effect and raising metabolic rate during recovery.
  • To maximize fat utilization, ensure you're in touch with the oxidation of fat as a fuel source.
  • Thinking faster is better leads to burning more carbs and replacing them with carbs, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy of not losing weight.
  • The stimulus might be too hard, recruiting fast twitch fibers when it should be slow twitch, or the carb and fat ratio might be off.
  • Athletes need to take ownership of their training and reach out to coaches for guidance.

Where to Find More of Chris' Content (00:36:42)

  • Chris Hinshaw can be found at, where all his information is available.

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