To Cardio or not to Cardio

HIIT is all the rage and for good reason in my opinion. It really makes conditioning and cardiovascular work interesting. It is intense and time efficient. I am able to push myself harder knowing my workout is going to be under 20min. It is easy to spot improvements in recovery, power, strength, and endurance when I am working with small consistent time intervals. (Oh my gosh! I did 19 jump squats in 20sec today instead of the usual 17!). Research shows there are plenty of cardiovascular benefits to be had from short intense bursts of exercise. But I have noticed that if I am trying to change my body, all the HIIT in the world doesn’t seem to make my body change like I want it too. My body is stubborn and bizarrely (and annoyingly) what it seems to need in order to change is some steady pace cardio. A respectable amount of steady pace cardio too. With heavy lifting, and a little HIIT on the side. I hate it. I am experimenting trying to find the minimal amount of cardio I can do while still moving forward because I don’t want to live on my spin bike. Ouch.


2 thoughts on “To Cardio or not to Cardio

  1. mmahony1023 says:

    I too have heard the same thing. That steady states of cardio are not as effective as HIIT. Are you lifting in rep ranges from 6-12? Do you lift heavy? I’m told that heavier lifting with short but high intensity cardio is the best method. I guess only time will tell?

  2. akihotori says:

    I don’t know if you can say steady state cardio is not effective. It is less time efficient than HIIT, but benefits can still be had from doing cardio. Also different people respond to various stimuli differently. If cardio was a truly horrible thing I am sure there would be far fewer endurance athletes in the world.
    Personally I get bored doing the same types of workouts so switching up my cardio style helps pervent that and sometimes I just don’t have it in me to jump around like a little monkey everytime my gymboss beeps. Sometimes a little low impact cardio on my spin bike is a nice change.
    I usally lift in the 6-12 rep range as heavy as I can manage with good form. I have recently added a fourth working set to my standard three sets (that I have been doing for ages). I have progressed quite a bit just by adding the fourth set.

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