Ok. So. I restarted running about a year ago and was doing regular Parkruns and managing 3 5ks a week. However, my working hours and need to do stuff for my children has stopped all that - I just can't justify (no matter how important my own heath is) coming home then going straight out for an hour or more in total when my children need their dinner. Plus, I was finding the runs REALLY exhausting, literally unable to put one foot in the other, every step a sheer misery. Never seemed to get the endorphin hit (which was a great part of every run when I was 40 but I don't seem to get it now that I'm 50 (NOT fair!)).

So HIIT routines at home seem the way to go. I have weights and bands that I could utilise. However, this is my problem and is why I don't sign up for a class.

I've got the following problems in order of 'severity': Something wrong with my lower right back - sacroiliac so not fully stable Right knee is a bit rubbish - I cannot and will not do Bridge (anyone who's done Hatha yoga will know that one) Mild hernia on left hand side caused by an extremely over zealous fitness induction at my local gym where I was given an inappropriately difficult ab exercise to do - I actually felt the hernia occur so I have to take great care with that flipping thing so I don't make it worse Then I also have an almost fully healed (after 4 YEARS) rotator cuff injury on my left arm - so I've got to be a bit careful with that.

Basically, I'm just about ready for the knackers yard!

It's the power moves, the rapid jump from here, squat, stand up, jump across that worry me re the knees and back and plus if I go to a class, I'll just do everything so some of the stuff that seems to make up HIIT routines like jumping jack squat thingies I just cannot do.

Not quite sure what exercises I could do that fall into that 'power' category but won't do bad stuff to back and knee. I can manage the shoulder pretty well but the back and knee is more of a worry.

Any ideas for combo's of exercises would be very gratefully received.

1 Answer 1


I think the main thing with HIIT is to get your heart rate up to 80-90% max with hard work, followed by a period of what is called active rest, followed by more work. You don't need to do complex movements with rapid jump ups, squats, etc... (I'm picturing jump squat burpees).

Although a lot of people think it's high impact, when done correctly, jumping rope is a low impact workout with high potential for reaping the rewards from HIIT. So, that's one thing you may want to look into. Although, admittedly, the learning curve may involve higher impact which may be detrimental. Also, since there is a somewhat significant (for most people) learning curve, frustration with learning the exercise properly may lead to quitting early.

Another option is a stationary bike. For the first six months of my weight loss and fitness journey, I got on the stationary bike, pedaled normal for 1:30, and then doubled the resistance and pedaled like hell for :30 seconds. I would do eight cycles of that and then I was absolutely done. Total time: 20 minutes. On that note, you can pick pretty much any cardio exercise (elliptical, recumbent bike, etc...) and do the same type of workout.

A third option I am thinking about is an agility ladder. Agility ladders are super cheap, and can even be made with something like duct tape on your floor. There are a ton of YouTube videos regarding HIIT agility ladder training. So, while some exercises may be slightly higher impact than others, there are such an infinite number of configurations you can do, surely you'll be able to find something that'll work.

Finally, I'll give you an example of one of the HIIT workouts I do that a friend told me about. This one is harder than you think, and works very well!

1 minute of Jumping Jacks, 1 minute of Mountain Climbers, 1 minute of Inchworms, and 1 minute of bodyweight squats. That's 1 round. Do 4 rounds with 1 minute rest in between rounds. That's a 20 min. workout. Admittedly, there is some minor impact with the jumping jacks, and potentially, with the mountain climbers. I suspect, based on what you wrote, that you'd be capable of doing that, but, of course, only you would know.

  • Cheers for that! Now dashing off to look at agility ladders - never heard of them! Much appreciated Feb 11, 2017 at 20:52

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