Dara Singh

Busting HIIT Myths

April, 2019
The Master Responds

The field of fitness and nutrition is driven by a lot of myths, confusions, and opinions, such as the best diet to follow, effective exercises for weight loss, workouts for weight gain, etc. In such a scenario, it's imperative to look at what the current scientific data suggests. Instead of confining to a single study, it is highly recommended to see complete scientific literature (e.g. meta-analysis) on the topic to reach a conclusion.

The much-talked-about topic these days in the fitness industry is the comparison between steady state cardio and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) cardio. While the steady-state cardio involves activities which shoot your heart rate to a level that can be maintained for a longer duration (30-60mins), HIIT is all about bouts of high- intensity (20-60secs) workout followed by a low-intensity activity (60-120secs).

While HIIT is considered superior to steady state cardio for fat loss, experts are divided on this new workout potion. The argument is that steady state cardio is aerobic in nature and burns calories majorly while doing the activity. The longer duration of the activity increases overall catabolism and there are chances of muscle loss. HIIT, on the other hand, is more intense (anaerobic) and has higher excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) which means body burns calories for a longer duration after the activity too. Due to its intense anaerobic nature, it spares muscle loss.

- KT

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