High Intensity Conditioning for FAT LOSS
HIIT is a form of interval training which alternates short periods of intense, near maximal work with less intense, or stationary rest periods.
The more effective fat loss option. All day. Every day.
Let us explain why…
When completing low-intensity steady state (LISS) exercise (e.g. walking/jogging) you are only burning energy (fat) at that moment; however, with high-intensity interval training (HIIT) we cause a large disturbance in the internal environment of the body – which result in larger amounts of fat to be burned over a 24 – 48-hour period!
You see, the body has the ability to take out a loan of sorts. A loan of oxygen. The body can complete highly intense exercise without the need for oxygen in the moment – but will have to take in much larger amounts of oxygen when its done. This is the reason you always feel so puffed when you reach the top of a flight of stairs.
This loan is technically known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) or oxygen debt and essentially means that your body will spend the next 24 – 48 hours consuming larger amounts of oxygen to return the internal environment to normal, or, ‘pay back’ the oxygen debt.
For example, you burn 300 calories over 30 minutes of LISS, therefore if you ate 300 extra calories you’d simply see no change. As opposed to 15 minutes HIIT, you’ll not only get the calories burned during exercise ~200, but your body will be burning more fats at rest for the next 24 to 48 hours – and this adds UP!
As well as this, high intensity has a direct positive impact on the volume of mitochondria within the muscle. Think of mitochondria as the powerhouse of your muscles – they create the energy, they burn the fuel. An increase in mitochondria means an increase in oxidative capacity, which studies have shown to be in a correlated with fat loss; greater mitochondria volume = greater capacity for fat loss.
… All this said; I’ll follow it with a ‘but’.
But, LISS isn’t useless. For some, it may be their only option for exercise and fat loss. For instance, if you are an absolute beginner then it may be best to start with walking and jogging. If you are prone to fainting, suffer from cardiac health issues or high blood pressure you should definitely consult your Doctor before beginning HIIT exercise – but low intensity should be used until symptoms cease.
And finally, it isn’t feasible to complete HIIT every day of the week; you’ll begin to see a decrease in performance if you do so. The body gets better from REST – not from exercise, always remember that!
It depends on the individual, but I’d recommend a mixture of both methods, with an emphasis on HIIT for optimal fat-loss results!