Think you don't have time to work out? You're not alone: Half of all people give up on an exercise program after six months for lack of time. But you may not need as much time as you think: The latest research finds short workouts can add up to big fitness benefits. It's called high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which simply means alternating short bursts of intense effort with longer bouts of recovery.
Elite athletes have long used HIIT to improve speed, strength, and stamina. And now researchers are finding it works for the rest of us, too, from out-of-shape couch potatoes to women with rheumatoid arthritis and everyone in between. "It's extremely potent and time efficient," says Martin Gibala, PhD, chair of the kinesiology department at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada, and author of The One-Minute Workout. "It's an approach that can be applied to almost anyone."