Get Ready to Break a Sweat With This 12-Minute Cardio and Strength HIIT Workout

We like HIIT workouts because they don't take long to do, they're intense, and they always leave us sweaty and exhausted. There are a variety of ways to do HIIT workouts with one of our favorite being the AMRAP, "as many reps as possible," format.

According to Chontel Duncan, SWEAT app trainer and creator of the FIERCE program, "The goal of doing an effective AMRAP workout is to focus on intensity, working as hard as you can in short bursts with only a small break in between."

Duncan likes to incorporate AMRAP into her training programs because "it's important for me to keep my body guessing and to keep my training interesting." HIIT is also great for building muscle and burning fat. If you want a taste of what it's like to train with Duncan, check out her quick and intense workout ahead.

The AMRAP Kettlebell Workout

Equipment needed: a six- to 12-kilogram kettlebell (or a 12.5- to 25-pound dumbbell)

Before jumping into the workout, make sure you spend a few minutes warming up your body. Here's a dynamic warmup that we really like. Once you're warm, grab a kettlebell (or dumbbell) and get ready to work.

This is an AMRAP workout, which means your goal is to complete as many reps of each exercise as you can within 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest. Complete a total of three rounds. If you want an extra challenge, Duncan said to do the circuit twice or increase your work-to-rest ratio to 45 seconds of work and 15 seconds of rest.

  • Goblet squat: 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest
  • Kettlebell swing: 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest
  • Single-arm row: 40 seconds (20 seconds on the left and right side) followed by 20 seconds of rest
  • Burpee: 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest
Goblet Squat
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Goblet Squat

  • Stand with your feet wider than shoulder width with toes pointed slightly out. Hold your dumbbell at chest level with both hands. Keeping your back flat, push your hips back, bend your knees, and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor and your elbows touch your knees.
  • With your weight focused in your heels, push yourself up to the starting position.
  • Repeat for 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest.
Kettlebell Swing
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Kettlebell Swing

  • Hold a kettlebell with both hands by the flat, top handle. Let your arms rest so the kettlebell hangs down between your legs.
  • Place your legs slightly wider than hip-width apart. Your toes should point slightly outward.
  • To begin, keep your back flat and brace your core. Bend at your knees, and push your glutes back.
  • While keeping your arms straight, press your weight down into your feet and squeeze your quads and glutes as you push the kettlebell up.
  • Extend your hips and legs to stand. This motion will drive the kettlebell up to just above shoulder height.
  • Control the momentum while lowering the kettlebell as it returns to starting position. Then begin the next repetition.
  • Repeat for 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest.
Single-Arm Row
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Single-Arm Row

  • Hold a dumbbell in your right hand — 10 pounds is a good starting point — and place your left knee and left hand on a bench. Your hand should be underneath your shoulder, and your knee should be underneath your hip. Your spine and head should be in a neutral position.
  • Engage your core, relax your shoulders, and extend your right arm toward the floor. Do not rotate your torso or let your shoulder lower toward the floor.
  • On an exhale, pull the dumbbell up with control, driving your elbow toward the ceiling. Do not rotate your torso.
  • On an inhale, lower the dumbbell back down to the starting position. This completes one rep.
  • Repeat for 40 seconds (20 seconds on each side) followed by 20 seconds of rest.
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  • Lower into a crouching squat with your hands on the floor.
  • Do a squat thrust by jumping your feet back into a plank position.
  • Do one basic push-up, bending your elbows and then straightening back to a plank.
  • Jump your feet forward to your hands, and come into a squat.
  • Do an explosive jump straight up, getting as much height as you can.
  • Repeat for 40 seconds followed by 20 seconds of rest.