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HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is becoming more popular than ever, thanks to its fixed periods of less intense exercise or even rest, mixed with bursts of activity. This workout may be efficient, but what are the effects it's having on your body? If you've been pushing your way through HIIT exercises and feeling run down, you may need to have your cortisol levels checked. These two go hand in hand sometimes, but luckily, the biostation has a solution. Here is what you need to know about HIIT and cortisol.

What Is HIIT?

HIIT is an exercise that focuses on bursts of activity, followed by periods of less-intense activity or even rest. These exercises work in all forms of exercise but may be altered to get the post-exercise calorie burn for which this type of exercise is known. This period of excess post-exercise oxygen consumption makes HIIT more efficient than some other forms of exercise since you have about a 2-hour timeframe after your workout that you'll be using energy. This extended-release will result in your body burning five to 15 percent more calories after the workout.

It has also been said that HIIT workouts improve cardiovascular function, tone the muscles, aid weight loss, and increase metabolism. You can perform the exercises anywhere.

What Is Cortisol?

Cortisol is a hormone that our body produces to help us handle stressful situations. During HIIT exercises, the brain senses the stress and causes the body to release certain hormones. Cortisol is one of them. The release activates the fight-or-flight response in the sympathetic nervous system, making our body believe that it may be in danger. When there's an imbalance in your cortisol levels, you may start feeling poorly. Symptoms include:

  • Decreased energy.
  • Muscle fatigue.
  • Anxiety.
  • Frequent illness due to a suppressed immune system.
  • Fatigue.
  • Lack of motivation.
  • Sleeplessness.

HIIT and Cortisol

How do HIIT and cortisol affect the other? Cortisol hormone is also responsible for specific physiological changes within our body, such as the breakdown of carbohydrates and certain fats. Through a HIIT exercise, the body thinks that it must perform quickly as if your survival depends on it. Your body will then make improvements that it believes are necessary for this to happen, which may wreak havoc on your body. Sometimes, people overtrain, which will lead to the symptoms listed above.


These symptoms happen because your body is experiencing a cortisol imbalance and is trying to make up for it. Too much of a good thing can be harmful, which is sometimes seen in patients who exercise through HIIT. Our bodies have difficulty accepting that they're supposed to be at rest, making everyday tasks more difficult. This imbalance may cause imbalances in other hormones produced in the body, such as estrogen, which may in turn worsen your symptoms.

Do I Need to Stop HIIT?

If you're experiencing the above symptoms, you may be wondering if you should stop HIIT. When done correctly, a HIIT routine can have numerous health benefits. When not done correctly, it can cause various issues such as hormonal imbalances. Hormonal imbalances are more likely to occur if you combine HIIT with a high-stress lifestyle. This doesn't necessarily mean that you need to stop your HIIT, but you may need to limit it. Try once or twice per week to help your body adjust and get used to the new stress you're putting on it.

If you're suffering from symptoms often, you may need to stop HIIT for the time being and seek medical treatment. To help avoid cortisol imbalances, you should make sure you're getting enough sleep at night and taking breaks from exercising. You can also take vitamin supplements as needed to boost your immune system, eat a clean diet with no processed foods, and stay hydrated. Try to avoid combining HIIT with any extreme diets, such as low carb, which may also raise cortisol levels.

How Can the biostation Help?

At the biostation, we offer various services to help safely balance your hormone levels. While it seems evident that treatment may be as simple as reducing stress, sometimes your body needs a little help. That's where we come in. We offer various hormone replacement therapy options designed to restore your body's imbalances naturally and effectively. Treatment options include bioidentical hormone therapy. 

This type of hormone replacement therapy is customized to fit your needs. Different administration options are available and include topical gels, subcutaneous injections, intramuscular injections, and hormone pellet insertion.

Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy

This fast-growing treatment option is very effective for hormonal imbalances. The hormones involved in treatment mimic the function and structure of human hormones and are derived from plants. They fit the body's receptors perfectly and help ensure that each patient achieves their body's optimized hormone levels. Benefits of bioidentical hormone therapy include:

  • Improved moods and fewer anxious and depressing thoughts.
  • Improved cardiovascular health.
  • Higher libido.
  • More energy.

the biostation Mission

At the biostation, we're dedicated to providing our patients with access to preventative healthcare and focus on offering them a higher level of care. We offer personalized approaches to overall wellness as well as options for testing for a reason for your symptoms. We aim to identify the root cause and treat it with care to restore your body. This approach will help alleviate your symptoms, prevent other conditions, and reverse the effects of aging. If you've been feeling out of sorts, visit us at the biostation to get started on your treatment plan today.

Visit the biostation Today

If you're experiencing symptoms of a cortisol imbalance, such as fatigue or anxiety, and have been doing HIIT, you may need to have your cortisol levels checked. Reach out to us at the biostation today to set up an appointment with one of our providers, and if required, we can develop a plan together that will get you back to feeling like yourself. You can reach us online or by phone at 561-462-4894. The knowledgeable team at the biostation looks forward to helping you.