It's been long and debated about whether you should do LISS or HIIT Cardio.
While LISS is more low impact and typically longer, HIIT can be a great alternative for getting in your cardio for a shorter amount of time at a higher impact.
At the end of the day it comes down to your body and your goals.
Let's get into what is best for you.
What is LISS
LISS stands for Low Intensity Steady State Cardio. This can be as simple as walking for a length of time.
Usually a longer version of cardio (30-60 minutes), but low impact so you can usually multitask while you are doing this like watching a video, listening to a podcast, or even planning out your meals.
This type of cardio training is great for those who prefer lower impact to their joints and have the extra time to workout even if it is just a walk around your neighborhood.
Usually uses fat as fuel in your body rather than glycogen that is stored in your muscles.
Who does this benefit?
This is appropriate for all fitness levels and is an easier recovery because it is more gentle on the body.
Great for those training for endurance and long distances. Which is also a great addition to heavy strength training days to help your body recover.
What is HIIT?
If you don't already know what HIIT Cardio is, it stands for High Intensity Interval Training.
This means that you are completing one to several exercises at a higher intensity for length of time. Then followed by a short amount of rest or a lighter intensity exercise.
This type of cardio can be great for those who want to get through their cardio session as fast as possible.
Due to the higher intensity, you can burn more calories in a shorter amount of time (5-20 minutes) so you don't have to spend more hours in the gym or your workouts.
Raises your metabolic rate to be higher even after several hours after your session is completed.
Who does this benefit?
HIIT is more ideal for those who don't already have any other limitations such as heart conditions.
Some may even avoid this style of cardio due to knee and shoulder problems as well because some exercises include explosive movements that can impact those areas.
However, this does not mean you can't if you already have different conditions. It just means you have to be more careful in the exercises that you decide to do.
This is great for those with limited time to workout, but want to or need to get in some cardio for their goals.
When it comes to competing
Cardio is cardio at the end of the day
When it comes to cardio, it is cardio. Choosing the best one for you will come down to what you can be most consistent with.
It should fit into your schedule and training in the gym already, while also being geared towards your goal in mind.
When competing, it is ideal to keep cardio to a minimum in the beginning and add or adjust as time goes on based on how your body is responding to your strength training.
Variety of both can be helpful
Both are beneficial to someone competing, because keeping your body guessing can help to avoid plateaus.
Plus this can also help to ensure you have variety so your training doesn't become boring in the process.
Take into account of your other workouts
Cardio should just add to what you are already doing in your training.
Meaning that it should complement all of the strength training you are doing all other days of the week in addition to your nutrition.
When cardio starts to outweigh everything else and you are starting to feel more fatigued on a daily basis, it could be a sign of over training.
LISS and HIIT cardio can both be beneficial if used in the right way.Your heart is a muscle and at the end of the day, it needs worked in some way, but you don't have to do endless amounts of cardio every single day just to reach your goals.
At Top Knot Strong, we pride ourselves on not doing a ton of cardio every single day.
Actually, we guarantee that you will never do more than 2 full hours of cardio per week.
Let us create your personalized training plan to help you step on stage confidently today by setting up a free 15 minute consult.