The Cardio That Works

Another study, this time from McMaster University in Canada, is showing that High Intensity Interval Training beats traditional forms durational cardio.

In a previous post on why cardio doesn’t work, I went into myriad of reasons why normal cardio fails to deliver the desired results and the benefits of HIIT.

High Intensity Interval Training is cardio vascular training where you “sprint” for short burst of time, usually less than two minutes, and then slow down for a minute or two. HIIT can be performed on an exercise bike, treadmill, elliptical, stepper or even in a parking lot.

HIIT are workouts are usally short, often less than 20 minutes, but deliver more results than traditional endurance training especially in terms of fat loss.

In a 1994 study comparing HIIT to traditional cardio, the group performing HIIT lost significantly more body fat then the group doing traditional cardio.

The researchers from Laval University in Quebec reported:

“The decrease in the sum of six subcutaneous skinfolds induced by the HIIT program was ninefold greater than by the ET (endurance training) program.”

The HIIT burned more fat while expending half the energy of traditional cardio.

There is no clear research on exactly why HIIT works better than traditional cardio, but Carl Lenore, a life extension and bodybuilding guru, suggested it was linked to evolutionary biology.

When humans hunted game on the savannah, they had to sprint. To flee a predator they had to sprint.

University studies have shown time and again HIIT beats traditional cardio. It is truly one of the instances where less is more.

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