I am a big fan of interval training (others call it HIIT or tabata). It takes so little time to complete: 15 to 20 minutes are more than enough to finish a complete workout. Also, it accelerates my basal metabolic rate which means I am burning those calories way beyond the actual end of the workout.
There is plenty of research that talks about how beneficial HIIT aka high intensity interval training – here’s a study to look at. Fat burning through this type of training is especially beneficial when tackling the visceral fat, the main factor believed to be #1 cause for heart disease.
This killer workout digs into body fat through its combination of both functional training elements but also high cardio intervals. That means both muscles and heart are engaged into the fat burning game all the time during this workout.
Now, like you all fitness aficionados, I asked myself if there’s anything else I should be doing to take my HIIT training to the next level and burn a bit more body fat, if possible. It turns out there’s an inexpensive way to do this.
L-Carnitine is a type of amino acid that benefits energy levels by transporting fatty acids into the mitochondria where they can be burned up and used as fuel. What that means is that, when conditions are met, this amino-acid can support the body’s need for energy to utilize and burn fat.
Per Dr. Axe, in one study out of Turkey published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, giving professional soccer players three to four grams of L-carnitine before exercise was found to prolong the time it took to reach exhaustion. (1) Similarly, an animal study out of India published in the journal Wilderness & Environmental Medicine showed that giving rats L-carnitine improved exercise endurance. (2).
Benefits of L-carnitine
- Increases Endurance
- Enhances Weight Loss
- Prevents Muscle Damage
- Amps Up Fat Burning
- Boosts Brain Function
- Regulates Blood Sugar
Give me the hack!
Alright, alright! And that takes us to the whole idea of this hack. The way I personally do this hack is by taking 1 mg of liquid L-carnitine 30 minutes before my HIIT session. I usually go with this L-Carnitine from Now Foods, but feel free to choose whatever brand you’re most comfortable with.
Thus far, this has helped me up my game by around 10% and I generally use it when I know I had a cheat day over the past week-end. At the end of the day we’re all humans but we need to make sure we compensate for our small “dietary sins” throughout our lives.
So that’s it, ladies and gents, boys and girls! Next time you’re looking into HIIT, have plenty of water at hand, drop in a pinch of L-Carnitine and HIIT it!