Breathing Techniques For High Intensity Interval Training

Abide by these simple principles to activate your inner-beast.

Breathing Techniques For High Intensity Interval Training


Breathing techniques during HIIT. It’s kind of like the electoral college. In the back of your mind, you know you should probably learn how it works, but it just never seems compelling enough to sit down and actually do it.


Your Quitter’s Mindset Ends Today.

Breathing properly during HIIT is the difference between being fresh enough to go a few more rounds or needing to lie down and eat cake. It means burning more calories per minute because of how much oxygen is circulating your system.

In reality, breathing during HIIT is actually on par with the essential skills like knowing how to grill, changing a flat tire, and evading questions requiring emotional vulnerability. You know, the Mt. Rushmore of life skills.

With that in mind, let’s break down some breathing basics so you can move on with your life, a little wiser than before:

1. Don’t Be A Shallow Mouth-Breather

Now’s the time to check in with yourself. Do you ever look like this dude during your workout? 

giphy (1)

In addition to being a total creep, this fella is hyperventilating. When you pant through your mouth, you’re purging too much carbon dioxide from your system. Your body responds by constricting your blood vessels, meaning less oxygen is circulating.

The result? Lightheadedness, fatigue, and all-around making everyone uncomfortable. Don’t be this guy.

2. In Through The Nose, Out Through The Mouth

One of the best ways to avoid being a panter is to make sure you’re inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your mouth. It establishes a clear in-out pattern, and breathing in through your nose also helps filter out the impurities in the air.

Depending on where you live, that can come in handy.

giphy (2)

3. Get A Rhythm And Stick With It

Do you know when you should be holding your breath, when you should be exhaling, and when you should be inhaling? Or, are you the equivalent of a drunk white guy at a wedding, leaving the whole rhythm thing to blind luck?  

giphy (3)

Scanning For Rhythm. None Detected.

While I can offer no dance tips, finding a rhythm with your breathing is fairly easy. When you’re doing aerobic activity, you want to find a rhythm which coincides with your body’s actions.

In through the nose, out through the mouth — with the breath in taking longer than the breath out.

When the activity is anaerobic, you want to time your exhale with the most explosive part of the act — much like a boxer’s sharp exhale when he throws a punch or Maria Sharapova’s banshee cry when she clubs a forehand down the line.

giphy (4)
My Ears Are Still Ringing.

So there you have it — that’s how to breathe through your HIIT workout. Keep it deep, inhale through the nose, and develop a rhythm that coincides with the exercise.

Keep experimenting with these breathing techniques until it feels right. The more you view breathing techniques as an essential practice—as important as your form—the more effective your workouts will be!

Like this? Then you’ll also enjoy:

What’s the Shortest, Most Effective Cardio? We (and Science) Have Your Back

Five Tips on How to Become a Fat-Burning Machine

How To Get Shredded By Summer

Leave a Reply

Your name will be published along with your comment. Required fields are marked *
    By clicking "Sign Up" you agree to allow us to keep you informed of our latest news and any offers. We will never sell your details on. Please see our privacy policy for more information.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.