Best Peloton HIIT and Tabata Classes (Explained)


One of the most popular and time-efficient ways to improve health, body composition, and performance is by doing high-intensity interval training. Peloton offers thousands of different workout programs, but does peloton have HIIT classes?

In general, the peloton has almost 3,000 HIIT classes in their workout library including cardio, strength, running, and cycling. Different types of HIIT classes include intervals, HIIT and Hills, Tabata and Climbs where you either increase the resistance or cadence.

Which makes HIIT classes a great solution even for people who don’t enjoy exercising. Keep reading to learn how to minimize the workout time and maximize your results using peloton HIIT and Tabata classes.

What Does HIIT Mean On Peloton?

As a whole, on the peloton, HIIT means high-intensity interval training. Peloton HIIT classes work by doing short bouts of high-intensity work (run, cycle, plyometrics) followed by a recovery phase (rest or walk). The intensity is increased by either adding more speed, resistance or incline.

The majority of peloton cardio, running, and cycling classes are HIIT because they involve climbing, sprinting, or doing circuit training with minimal resting time. Even the beginner low-impact classes include short bouts of higher intensity but with a much longer recovery time.

Are Peloton HIIT Workouts Good?

The peloton HIIT workouts are good because they help reduce body fat, improve aerobic fitness, and increase metabolic rate in a relatively short period of time. Multiple studies have shown that HIIT is an effective alternative to standard exercise recommendations.

How often should you do HIIT peloton? As a whole, you can do HIIT peloton 3 to 5 days a week, depending on your current workout routine and the time available for training. HIIT peloton is good for people who want to add more volume to their workouts, without spending additional time.

Is peloton HIIT better than cardio? As a whole, the peloton HIIT is better than cardio, especially for people who are short on time. Peloton HIIT allows working on aerobic and anaerobic fitness in a short period of time. However, the optimal benefits are for people who have the skills to push themselves.

Best Peloton HIIT Classes

The best thing about doing peloton HIIT classes is time efficiency. You can train the full body in just under 20-minutes. Which is great for people who don’t love to exercise or for everyone who has only limited time available to train.

#1 HIIT Cardio

Peloton HIIT cardio can be used on its own as a workout (especially if you’re really crunched on time) or as an addition to your current cycling or running routine. Cycling on its own can improve your aerobic fitness, but when you add components of high-intensity strength you get much better results.

What is HIIT cardio peloton? As a whole, the HIIT cardio peloton is a series of classes that involve doing full-body exercises with, as well as without the equipment. The class duration ranges between 20 to 45 minutes and consists of doing 3-4 exercises back to back, followed by a short recovery time.

I like doing peloton HIIT cardio with Selena Samuela. She has great energy and chooses compound exercises like dumbbell swings or snatches. Those moves are functional and require multiple muscle groups to work. She also uses heavy dumbbells, which can elevate your heart rate with minimal repetitions.

Is 20 minutes of peloton enough? As a whole, 20 minutes of the peloton is enough to increase metabolic rate and stimulate muscle protein synthesis. This leads to better body composition and performance. However, doing only 20 minutes workouts isn’t the most optimal way to improve fitness.

In other words, doing 20-minute is better than nothing. However, if your goal is to get the best results, the peloton cardio HIIT should be used as an addition to either weight lifting or long-distance endurance rides.

What are the best peloton HIIT cardio classes? In general, the best peloton HIIT cardio classes are the 20-minute Rock HIIT cardio with Selena and the 20-minute Hip Hop HIIT cardio with Adrian. Those classes have a good mix of both bodyweight plyometrics, together with resistance training.

#2 Tabata classes

According to studies, Tabata training is one of the most energetically effective high-intensity interval training methods (Tabata, 2019). Apart from anaerobic improvement, the Tabata workouts help to increase aerobic power comparable to regular steady-state cardio, with less amount of time required.

What is peloton tabata? In general, the Peloton Tabata is a series of high-intensity interval classes with a 2:1 ratio of work and resting time. The classes involve 20 seconds max effort work, followed by 10 seconds rest. The Tabata class will usually last between 20 to 45 minutes.

Does peloton have Tabata classes? As a whole, the peloton has dozens of Tabata classes in their peloton digital app. However, the only categories of classes that include Tabata are cycling and running. To find the Tabata classes head on to the filter tab and search for intervals.

Tabata is one notch harder compared to HIIT cardio. In HIIT, you have a significant recovery time where your heart rate comes back down. In peloton Tabata, your recovery time is barely 10 seconds. This means your heart rate is elevated throughout the whole class.

How hard is peloton tabata? In general, the peloton Tabata is hard because it involves going max effort for 20 seconds, followed by only 10 seconds recovery for a number of 8 rounds. However, the toughness of the workout will depend on the individual’s ability to push themselves.

Whats the hardest peloton tabata class? The hardest peloton Tabata ride is the 45-minute class with Robin Arzon. This class includes an 11-minute warm-up, followed by a 33-minute main workout where you sprint for 2 minutes and recover for 1 minute.

How many calories do you burn in a 45 minute Tabata class? As a whole, you can burn between 700 to 900 calories in a 45-minute Tabata class. The number of calories burned during the Tabata will depend on multiple factors like your current fitness level, the type of class, the volume of exercise, and the effort you put into the workout.

What are the best peloton Tabata classes? In general, the best peloton Tabata classes are with Robin Arzon. Her classes are relentless because each time she encourages you not only to increase the cadence but also the resistance during the interval rides.

#3 HIIT Run

Peloton HIIT run can be found in both tread and outdoor categories. The difference between HIIT run on the tread and outdoor is that outdoor your only estimate of effort is an RPE scale of one to 10. On the other hand, the tread HIIT run allows you to precisely select the running pace by choosing the right treadmill speed.

What is peloton HIIT run? As a whole, the peloton HIIT run is the tread workout series designed to work on both aerobic and anaerobic fitness. The class duration is between 10 to 60 minutes and is divided into three levels that vary in difficulty level from beginner to advanced.

What I like about the HIIT class is it has different work to rest time ratio. Some of the hardest HIIT runs are with Becs Gentry, which includes intervals of 5 minutes max effort, followed by a 1-minute recovery walk.

What’s the difference between Peloton HIIT run and interval run? The difference between peloton HIIT run and Interval run is that interval run has a moderate intensity and can be done by beginners. It can include light jogging followed by walking time, which is great for people to get started with running.

On the other hand, the HIIT run has a longer and more intense running time. And because it is much harder to maintain the high-intensity effort for a longer duration, realistically, those classes can be mainly tolerated by skilled runners.

Peloton HIIT vs Intervals

The difference between peloton HIIT and intervals is that intervals often include prolonged recovery time and moderate work intensity. The HIIT classes are designed to minimize rest time and maximize heart rate during the workout.

Also, the HIIT workouts are the branch of intervals. This means every HIIT workout is gonna contain interval training in nature, but not all interval training has high-intensity components. In the table below you can see the main differences between peloton HIIT and intervals.

Peloton HIITPeloton Interval
Vigorous intensity
Higher work to rest ratio
Works on anaerobic fitness
Suitable for intermediate and advanced people
Low to moderate intensity
Similar work to rest ratio
Works on aerobic fitness
Suitable for beginners and intermediate people
Peloton HIIT vs Intervals

As you can see, the interval classes require less intensity and skills than HIIT. However, the Peloton HIIT can be good for beginners, as long as you’re mindful of your abilities.

Peloton Power Zone vs HIIT

The difference between the power zone and peloton HIIT is that the power zone is designed to reach and maintain one specific fitness zone for the entire duration of the class. This requires running or cycling with the same effort for a certain amount of time.

This is very helpful when your goal is to improve your performance and run faster on the 5K or 10K. On the other hand, the HIIT changes its intensity by having high effort work, followed by low-intensity work.

This is helpful if your goal is to train anaerobic fitness or get the aerobic power with less work time. Below you can see the graph that illustrates the difference between peloton power zone and HIIT workouts.

Peloton Power Zone vs HIIT

Peloton HIIT vs HIIT and Hills

The difference between peloton HIIT and HIIT and Hills is that in HIIT classes the increase in intensity is due to higher cadence on the bike or speed on the treadmill. Increasing the pace is the main modality of adding intensity to the class.

On the other hand, the HIIT and Hills peloton is more about the combination of different modalities that increase the overall output. You can achieve high-intensity effects by keeping the moderate speed on the treadmill, but at the same time, you increase the treadmill elevation.

Peloton HIITPeloton HIIT and Hills
Faster speed on treadmill
Higher cadence on bike
Moderate speed on treadmill combined with incline
Moderate cadence on bike combined with higher resistance
Peloton HIIT vs HIIT and Hills

How Many Calories Does Peloton HIIT Burn?

As a whole, you can burn between 13 to 17 calories per minute doing peloton HIIT and cardio. This means the 30-minute HIIT class can burn between 390 to 500 calories. The number of calories will depend on the type of class you do and the effort level you put into the class.

Keep in mind that HIIT is not the perfect solution for burning calories in the long run. If time is not the issue, then I would recommend doing longer rides.

If your goal is to burn as many calories as possible, do long-distance rides that last for 75 to 90 minutes and can burn much more calories than a 30-minute session.

I’m not gonna cover here best peloton rides for burning calories. I’ve already done that in “peloton rides that burn the most calories“, which I recommend you read.

Can I Do Peloton HIIT Every Day?

People who are busy and struggle to find time for steady-state exercise can do peloton HIIT every day, as long as the class duration stays between 10 to 15 minutes. Doing longer high-intensity rides daily can lead to muscle fatigue, poor recovery, and overtraining.

High-intensity workouts around your VO2max are more energy demanding, but also more taxing on the body.

According to longevity and well-being expert, Dr. Peter Attia, the most optimal frequency for HIIT workouts (where you reach power zone 5 and 6) is one session per week.

At the same time, the majority of the weekly sessions should be around power zone 2 and 3, where you can maintain blood lactate concentration under 2 mmol/l.

To learn more about how to build your weekly “peloton workout plan” check out my article here.

I find that on the days when I don’t have much time, doing 10-15 minutes HIIT sessions is enough to increase metabolic rate, without causing muscle fatigue.

The whole idea behind HIIT is an alternative for people who are busy. So if you don’t have time or access to a proper fitness facility when you’re traveling, doing 10 min peloton HIIT is better than doing nothing.

However, if you do have a regular gym workout and you want to add HIIT on top of it, then doing it every day can bring diminishing returns in the long term.

The body needs to have time to recover, and when you have high-intensity workouts on a daily basis it reduces resting time and can lead to injury.

Best Peloton HIIT Instructors

Two of the best peloton HIIT instructors include Selena Samuela and Rad Lopez. Those instructors not only present a variety of well-designed workouts but also keep you engaged and motivated.

What I like about Rad classes is that he uses a combination of bodyweight moves that requires speed, good mobility, and balance. On the other hand, Selena has many compound exercises that use weights.

Conclusion

Doing peloton HIIT workouts on its own or as an addition to your current fitness routine is a great way not only to burn more calories but also to train at a higher anaerobic threshold. However, to get the best body composition or performance results, it is better to do longer classes.

As a whole, over 2,200 rides on the peloton app are HIIT workouts that last between 20 to 45 minutes. High-intensity interval training rides include intervals, climbs, hills, and sprints where you increase your output for a short period of time, followed by rest time or low-intensity work.

Learn more: Click here to read more about “best peloton classes for weight loss“.

Michal Sieroslawski

Michal is an exercise physiologist (MSc), nutrition coach, Ashtanga teacher, and fitness blogger. He shares his successes and failures to help busy men and women squash down 20, 50, or even 100 pounds of fat without leaving their home.

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