HIIT Workout vs Steady State
Understanding the differences between a HIIT workout and the other cardio varieties is one of the best things you can do to ensure you shape your workout in a manner that will yield optimal results. When it comes to transforming your figure, weight training is king. It burns fat, tones your muscle, and improves your fitness. But beyond that, adding some cardio to the mix is always a good idea. Cardio helps balance out your workout routine while improving your heart health and fitness level. This said, which cardio is best? There are two primary types: steady state and interval training. Knowing which variety is right for you will help point you in the proper direction. Let’s go over the pros and cons of each.
High Intensity Interval Training
High intensity interval training, otherwise known as a HIIT workout, is a form of cardio that has you alternating between brief periods of all out intense exercise with active periods of recovery. These intervals are repeated 5-15 times, adding a brief warm-up and cool-down. As far as fat burning goes, HIIT is the route to go. This form of cardio, much like weight lifting, not only burns calories while you do it, but for hours after it’s done. In fact, you can see an elevated metabolic rate up to 48 hours post-workout, so if you do these three times per week, you can burn fat faster all week long. This form of cardio, as it is so intense, will also help elevate your fitness level quicker. You’ll be pushing yourself to the limit and as such, see great gains in cardiovascular fitness. Finally, it’s short in duration. Your average HIIT workout lasts just 15-20 minutes, so for those with a busy schedule, you can get in and out of the gym in no time.
These three key benefits make it a very popular choice for many.
Steady State Cardio Training
Despite how great a good HIIT workout may seem, don’t be too quick to discount steady state. While steady state won’t burn fat as quickly as HIIT and it doesn’t boost your cardiovascular fitness as high, there is a time and place for it.For those who don’t have as great of recovery systems, steady state cardio won’t stress the body as much, so tends to be better performed between your weight lifting workouts. If you tend to have poor recovery, if you attempt three weight training workouts and three HIIT workout per week, it won’t be long before you’re burnt out or overtrained. Second, steady state cardio is also ideal for beginners. A beginner trainee simply doesn’t have the capacity to perform high intensity interval training, so steady state would be the superior choice until they get to this fitness level.
So overall, do a HIIT workout, if you can do them and recover from them, are far more superior to steady state cardio. But if you are just starting out or you are still feeling fatigued from your strength training, steady state cardio should be your choice of exercise. For you, for the time being, it’ll be more appropriate.
Assess your own situation and make an educated decision from there.