Cardio For Weight Loss: Steady State Cardio vs HIIT

The Most Efficient Way To Lose Weight With These Two Types Of Cardio Trainings

People always wonder what it's the most effective way to lose weight; low intensity steady state cardio or high intensity interval training? They both offer a great way to develop your cardiovascular system, but people and trainers have different opinions for their efficiency on fat loss.
With this Cardio For Weight Loss: Steady State Cardio vs HIIT, you will have a better understanding of these two different approaches.

Usain Bolt sprint

Most people start fitness with the goal to stay lean, and it requires a proper nutrition, have a good workout routine along with cardio trainings. But it's not just about your fitness goals, doing cardio trainings are necessary to obtain good health; it increases your endurance, lower your blood pressure, helps you burn fat, increase your metabolism and prevent heart diseases. But the same question remains; what kind of cardio exercises should you do to burn fat?
Gymaholic provides you the cardio trainings you need to make a successful fat loss.

Difference Between Fat Loss And Weight Loss

Remember that good nutrition is key if you want to achieve your fitness goals. Obtaining a low body body fat is a dream for a lot of fitness practitioners; especially men who want to get ripped and women who desire a toned body. However, losing fat and losing weight are two different things.

  • Losing fat: It means that you've been able to burn the "extra" fat you add. This method is often used by people who want to burn fat while maintaining their muscle mass (fitness addicts, bodybuilders). It requires to have a very precise nutrition plan and cardio trainings that will allow you to only burn fat and not muscle.

  • Losing weight: In the other hand, losing weight can also occur when you've lost muscle tissue, or simply water. Muscle tissue loss happens when you're burning WAY more calories than you consume, so your body uses muscle tissue as a source of energy. It's the worst nightmare for people who want to keep their muscle mass. However, it can be useful for someone who thinks that his "legs are too muscular".

So think twice when you hear someone say "I lost 10 pounds in 1 week", it can be fat loss, muscle loss or simply water loss.

Type Of Exercises Considered As LISS (Low Intensity Steady State Cardio)

Steady state cardio is an aerobic exercise that you perform at 60%-70% of your maximal capacity for 20 minutes or more. The speed remains the same during the whole exercise. Here are some activities you can do as a steady state cardio:

  • Walking

  • Jogging

  • Cycling

  • Elliptical

  • Swimming

Type Of Exercises Considered As HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

HIIT workouts are a bit different. You must execute a certain exercise at your maximal capacity for a short period of time (often between one and two minutes). Then you rest for about the double of time you spent performing the exercises (between 2 minutes and 3 minutes). You repeat this cycle until you can barely stand (five times or more). Here are some activities you can do as a HIIT workout:

  • Treadmill Program

  • Battle Rope

  • Burpees

  • Mountain Climbers

  • Jumping Jacks

Woman battle rope

Lose Fat With LISS (Low Intensity Steady State Cardio)

For a long time, steady state cardio has proven to be very efficient with fat loss. It's recommended to run between 30 minutes and 90 minutes in order to obtain great results. Research has shown that running for 45 minutes and more, seems to be the best duration in order to use fat as a source of energy. Remember that fat loss occurs hours after your cardio session. LISS is a simple way of burning fat for beginners.
However, for people who are looking for maintaining muscle mass, it's not recommended to run more than 45 minutes; which could lead to catabolism (breakdown of muscle tissue).

Lose Fat With HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

In the other hand, HIIT allows you to burn a lot of calories in a shorter time that steady state cardio. Since it's using a variety of different muscle groups; you will build lean muscle mass. It's often used by people already athletics, because HIIT exercises often require a general strength and mobility that beginners may not have.
Beginners can totally do HIIT exercises, but they have to start slow and be aware of their own physical limitations.

LISS (Low Intensity Steady State Cardio) VS HIIT (High Itensity Interval Training)

At the end of the day, it's up to you to choose what kind of cardio training you want to do. LISS and HIIT are effective for fat loss and they both have pros and cons:

Low Intensity Steady State Cardio

  • Pros: Improve cardiovascular system without losing muscle mass

  • You recover faster

  • Great for beginners

  • Cons: It can be boring and repetitive

High Intensity Interval Training

  • Pros: Burns more calories

  • Build lean muscle mass

  • It's shorter, so you don't get bored

  • Cons: The risk of injury is high

  • You can't do it every day, otherwise it can have a negative impact on your muscle growth

In Conclusion

This article; Steady State Cardio vs HIIT gave you some tips in order to help you improve your cardiovascular system and promote fat loss.
Let's summarize what we've just learned:

  • LISS means: Low Intensity Steady State Cardio

  • HIIT means: High Intensity Interval Training

  • Your nutrition is key for your fat loss.

  • Cardio trainings increases your endurance, lower your blood pressure, helps you burn fat, increase your metabolism and prevent heart diseases

  • Weight loss and fat loss are two different things.

  • LISS are exercises that you perform at 60%-70% of your maximal capacity for 20 minutes or more.

  • HIIT are exercises that you perform at your maximal capacity for a short period of time.

  • They are very efficient for fat loss, you can add them both in your workout routine.

LISS or HIIT: Just do it!

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