HIIT Workout Versus Steady Cardio

First things first, what is HIIT cardio and regular cardio?

Steady-state cardio, simply known as regular cardio, is what many relate to when they think of exercise. It is where you perform an activity at a steady, challenging but manageable pace (55 to 70 percent of maximal capacity) for 15-20 minutes or more, aiming for a heart rate of 120 beats per minute.

HIIT workouts on the other hand, are slightly more complex. It is where you perform an activity for as hard as you can (90 to 100 percent of maximal capacity) for a brief, set time period (usually two minutes or less), then back off for a rest interval (usually three minutes or less), and repeat the cycle four times or more.

It seems like not that long ago when cardio was just cardio – there weren’t endless debates on what the best type was or when you should do it.

Over the last few years we’ve seen the rise in popularity of high intensity interval training or HIIT for short. This is what a lot of the pros are recommending, citing its increased effectiveness compared with traditional steady state cardio when it comes to losing fat.

But is one better for you versus another? Let our gym instructor discuss this and take you through both training methods, and see if one might suit your training regime better than the other.

“It depends on what your overall outcome/goal is. HIIT workouts are proven to help you lose fat in a shorter space of time than long-distance cardio. With that said, you have a higher probability for overreaching and over training with HIIT than you do with steady cardio.

The best possible answer I can give you is cross-training or a mixture of both. Throughout our 13 clubs spread across Ireland, we tailor our classes to feature both, in turn getting the most out of each session. Please visit your local Club Vitae gym or for more details on our class timetables.