HIIT vs Steady State Cardio

The Claim: High Intensity Interval Training causes you to burn more calories than steady state cardio (given the same amount of work)


High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is marketed as the being superior to steady state cardio for calorie burning and fat loss. From a time and efficiency stand point it might work better simply because you can get more work done in the same amount of time. But as far as the total amount of work done there is no difference.

HIIT is useful if you want to get a cardio workout done in a short period of time, but you and I both know most people are doing it for fat loss and not for the cardiovascular health benefit. In which case it’s just a matter of total work done.

The people who market HIIT demonize steady state cardio as if it is something bad for you but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Slower paced steady state cardio is a great way to clear your mind, relax and unwind. There is definitely a place for lower intensity activity like walking or jogging. Anyone who tries to tell you that it’s not good for you is just trying to sell you a HIIT program.

For general health walking at least 30 minutes per day is one of the best things you can do.

And HIIT is just fine too if you like doing it, but if you don’t like it there is no reason to you have to do it.

And a final note, neither of them are any good for fat loss.