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What Type Of Cardio Is Best For Fat Loss?

The Cardio Question: What Type Of Cardio Is Best For Fat Loss?

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Unsure if steady state or high intensity cardio is better for the fat loss process? Bodybuilder Cliff Wilson explains the science behind fat loss and helps you to get shredded.

The thought of doing cardio usually invokes strong feelings for most people. In my experience most people either love doing cardio or hate doing cardio. There are very few people that are indifferent on the subject. Some love the feeling they get from hopping onto that treadmill and working up a good sweat, while others would rather drive over their own foot just to have an excuse to skip their cardio for the day. Whether you love it or hate it, when it’s time to start getting lean for a show cardio poses a lot of questions for a lot of people.

Questions about duration, frequency, and what type of cardio is best, flood my inbox every day. Cardio is necessary to get ultra shredded for a show, but you have to get it right. Too much and you’ll be lean alright, but you will also sacrifice muscle to get to that point. Too little and you’ll find yourself on the far left of the stage where you won’t get in the way of the judges ability to see those that got lean enough. If your diet is on point, and you get your cardio right, you can be sure you will come in lean and muscular. This is the formula for champions.

Getting Started

Treadmill cardioWhen transitioning from offseason to contest prep the first thing that must be established is how many days per week cardio sessions should be performed. This is often where people’s love or hatred for cardio comes into play. Those that love cardio will tend to start with too many sessions per week. This is not a good thing, because the human body is highly adaptive. Your body will adjust to this level of cardio faster than you would like, resulting in a weight loss plateau.

Once this happens your only choice is to cut calories or increase the cardio. Those that take this approach will find themselves only a few weeks into their diet doing two cardio sessions per day every day just to keep fat loss moving. This will lead to overtraining and muscle tissue breakdown, leaving you flat and small come show day.

Those that hate cardio will tend to try and ease themselves into their workouts by starting really low and trying to increase it slowly. Not necessarily a bad idea, but when dieting for a show, time is of the essence, and you must use it wisely. In my experience if you start with too few sessions per week you won’t be ready.

The best approach is a more moderate one. The amount of cardio that you should start with is highly dependent on your body type, so I can’t give you exact specifics on frequency, duration, and intensity. Just know that starting with a more moderate approach and moving upward from there will ensure the best results.

The Great Debate

The number one question most people have about cardio is, “What type of cardio is best for fat loss?” There are those that say low intensity cardio performed for longer periods of time is better for fat loss, while others claim that short duration, high intensity cardio sessions will give the best results. This is the part that tends to confuse people the most. Advocates on both sides of the argument are usually pretty passionate in their beliefs. To know which style of cardio to perform, it helps to know how each one helps you burn fat.

Low Intensity, Long Duration Cardio

For many years this has been a staple in many bodybuilders fat loss arsenal. Generally, this type of cardio is performed at a constant pace for 60 minutes or more. It is commonly referred to as Low Intensity Steady State Cardio (LISS). The main argument for this type of cardio is that, of the calories burned, most of it comes from fat.

During any type of exercise, the level of intensity is very important. It is well known that the lower the intensity of any exercise, the greater the percentage of energy derived from fat oxidation. (1) As the intensity of exercise rises more of the calories being burned come from muscle glycogen and muscle tissue. This is why advocates of LISS usually prefer to walk on a treadmill or stair stepper for long periods of time. They feel that by doing this they are burning more fat and less muscle.

The only problem is that during the entire time any type of cardio is being performed your body is in a catabolic state and it is breaking down muscle tissue for energy. Switching from a low intensity pace to a more moderate pace and lowering the duration a little may be a better option.

Treadmill cardio

Moderate intensity steady state cardio has been proven to lead to the greatest amount of fat oxidation. Research has shown that fat oxidation is highest when training at about 65% Vo2 max. (2) At this intensity level, not only is the greatest amount of fat being burned, but this rate of exercise can be continued for somewhat longer durations as well.

When dieting for a contest body fat levels will become minimal at some point. At this point muscle tissue breakdown becomes more likely. Limiting the amount of time that your body is catabolic is of utmost importance if you wish to hold onto all the muscle you worked so hard for. So for maximum fat loss and muscle retention, moderate intensity cardio for a rather moderate duration is the best choice.

High Intensity, Short Duration Cardio

High intensity, short duration cardio has become more popular in recent years. The most effective form of high intensity cardio has been proven to High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). HIIT allows for very high intensities to be used and alternated with short periods of recuperation. Many people shy away from high intensity cardio claiming that nearly all of the calories that are expended come from stored muscle glycogen and not from fatty acids.

This is very true, but those people are forgetting one very important thing. Fat loss occurs through a process called lypolysis. Lypolysis occurs during periods when energy expenditure exceeds caloric intake. (3) The most important thing during cardio is burning enough calories to create a deficit. This can be accomplished in much less time with high intensities.

Even though stored carbohydrates in the form of muscle glycogen are the primary fuel source at higher intensities, fat loss will be greater with the use of HIIT. Studies show a greater loss of subcutaneous fat with HIIT as compared to those that performed standard LISS endurance training. The reason for this is because post exercise lipid utilization is greatly enhanced with HIIT. (4) This means that even after activity has ended your body will keep burning fat. So not only can you burn calories during training, but your metabolism will also get a boost. This is definitely a nice bonus if you ask me.

Treadmill cardioAnother concern that a lot of people have about HIIT is that at higher intensities a greater amount of amino acids are broken down and used as energy. This is true, but many people will be shocked to find out that if HIIT sessions are kept short then they can actually help retain and even build muscle. You read that right, cardio can help you build muscle. Any type of intense cardio will cause your body to release growth hormone (GH).

The growth hormone response to aerobic activity is determined by the % of Vo2 max. (5) Therefore, the more you push yourself, the higher growth hormone levels will go. I know many of you are thinking, “So what? If I am supposed to keep my sessions short I will only get 15-20 minutes of higher growth hormone levels.” The good news is that, not only will these brief, high intensity sessions cause an immediate GH increase, but GH levels can keep increasing even after training has ceased. (6)

GH is not the only hormone affected by HIIT. Testosterone levels can also be optimizing through strategic use of HIIT. During and following high intensity aerobic exercise, testosterone levels become elevated and remain elevated for a couple of hours into recovery. This only holds true with short durations though. Prolonged high intensity exercise results in an initial increase in testosterone followed by a decrease to below baseline levels. (7)

This is yet another reason why it is important to keep these sessions as intense as possible, but very brief. There is one problem with HIIT though; there are limits as to how many sessions can be performed before it becomes counterproductive. If high intensity sessions are performed too often, then baseline testosterone levels will decrease, and will lead to an increase in amino acid breakdown. This is why it is best to keep these sessions to only a few per week.

Anabolic hormones, such as testosterone and GH, are the key to building and keeping muscle. HIIT training can produce sharp increases in both of these hormones, which will go a long way to help retain muscle when calories are low. HIIT training can also increase fat burning by boosting the metabolism. This is why HIIT cardio is also a great choice for getting shredded while maintaining or even gaining muscle along the way.

Which One?

So, which type of cardio should you use to help you get to that next level of conditioning? The answer is...both. HIIT cardio can only be performed a few times a week for it to be effective, but not many people can get into contest shape doing only a few cardio sessions per week. LISS sessions will need to be added to make sure enough cardio is being performed every week.

This is not the only reason to use both types of cardio. Both approaches shed fat effectively, but thru different pathways. HIIT cardio will increase lypolysis primarily by speeding up the metabolic rate, whereas LISS will burn more fat and calories during the actual workout. As I stated earlier, I can’t give an exact number of sessions you need to perform each week since the differences in individual metabolism’s can vary greatly. A good place to start would be with 2 to 3 HIIT sessions per week and add in some LISS sessions as needed.

Even though some people love cardio and others hate it, I think it is safe to say everyone loves winning. Applying sound strategies in your cardio routine will help put you one step closer to first place.

References

1. Kang, J., Bioenergetics Primer for Exercise Science, 2008, 83-84p.

2. Maughan, R., J., Nutrition in Sport, Volume 7, 2000, 186p.

3. Runge, M., S., Patterson, C., Principles of Molecular Medicine, 2006, 957p.

4. Wolinsky, I., Driskell, J., A., Sports Nutrition: Energy Metabolism and Exercise, 2008, 55-56p.

5. Juul, A., Jorgensen, J., O., L., Growth Hormone in Adults: Physiological and Clinical Aspects, 2000, 33-35p.

6. Plowman, S., A., Smith, D., L., Exercise Physiology for Health, Fitness, and Performance, 2007, 40p.

7. Plowman, S., A., Smith, D., L., Exercise Physiology for Health, Fitness, and Performance, 2007, 42-43p.

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  • About The Author
    Cliff found a passion for weight training and bodybuilding. Now a competitive bodybuilder himself, Cliff trains other bodybuilders through his training business Team Wilson.
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Comments (66)

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Amadeo
Posted Tue, 06/28/2011 - 20:45

this is an awsome article, you have to do some type of cardio to loose fat,any type of cardio is better than no cardio.

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Thu, 06/30/2011 - 10:11

Thanks Amadeo, I really appreciate it.

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Matt
Posted Fri, 01/06/2012 - 16:40

This is a great, accurate, well-written article. Just to let everyone know the current guidelines...the ACSM recommends 30 minutes x 5 or more days/week of moderate intensity -or- 20 minutes x 3 or more days/week of high intensity cardio for general-population health benefits and weight maintenance. For weight-loss its about 180 minutes " "

* Remember that if you have cardiac risk factors (heart disease, obesity, smoking, family history, etc..) to ALWAYS ask your doctor before beginning a cardio routine of any kind!

Matt, B.S., ACSM-HFS
Exercise Physiologist

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Orlando Finnie
Posted Thu, 06/30/2011 - 01:27

I must say Cliff that was a very informative and interesting article!!!! And as you know I LOVE doing cardio and now that I know more about HIIT releasing GH & testosterone I have more motavation when doing my cardio!! Great article, keep that knowledge coming....

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zahra aslani
Posted Sat, 07/02/2011 - 01:30

Hi,Thank you for your attention tome,I like you get favor to me and send more information,agai thank,s.

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Chris Chrisman
Posted Tue, 07/05/2011 - 06:24

Hi Cliff. I am a 47 year old male. I have been a runner all my life and for the last year i have been involved in CrossFit, which I enjoy greatly. My issue is belly fat. I describe my shape as that of a snake which has swallowed a golf ball. At my peak, I was doing CrossFit 5 days a week, and although my body looked great (to me), I could not get past the belly.
I have recently given up sugar and caffeine (30 days ago) and I am loosely following a Paleo diet. My question is where a cardio regimen would fit in with CrossFit. As CrossFit is a high-intensity, (relatively) short work out with no "intervals", would you still give the same advice on HITT and LISS?
Thank you for any advice.
Sicerely,

Chris Chrisman

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Ryan Schultz
Posted Thu, 07/14/2011 - 20:14

This is a cool article. I'm starting as a personal trainer this coming semester at Oswego State in NY. I look forward to helping my clients reach their goals by the best possible means, and this article really helps bring together a lot of what I have learned.

I think that this is a good source for anyone looking to lose weight, not just those competing.

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Fri, 07/22/2011 - 23:16

Thanks everyone for the kind comments. Chris, I would count your crossfit works as your HIIT. Although you may want to add one more true HIIT session to your weekly routine. Then I would just add a few MISS sessions in per week. As for your belly fat, there is good news and bad news. The order in which your body chooses to remove fat is completely genetic. Obviously your body holds on to belly fat last. That is the bad news. The good news is that once you get to the point where there is little fat left on other areas of your body the rate at which fat will come of your midsection will increase greatly. This is provided that you continue to lose weight. As long as you are training and dieting properly you should not worry about muscle loss. This is because if you lose 5 lbs and there is not much fat on other areas of your body, it has no choice but to come primarily off your abs. Congrats on getting in shape. Keep losing weight and it will come of your abs soon enough, I promise.

Cliff

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charles
Posted Wed, 08/03/2011 - 12:19

Is it better to do cardio before weight training or after?

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Thu, 08/04/2011 - 10:15

Hey Charles,

Definitely always do cardio after weight training. When doing cardio your body uses a combination of stored carbs, in the form of glycogen, and stored fat as fuel. When weight training your body can only use the stored carbs (glycogen) as energy. If you do cardio first your glycogen levels will be depleted by the time you get to you weight training. This means that you will not be able to lift as much and will be weaker. On the other hand, if you lift first you will also deplete you glycogen levels. This means that when you start your cardio session your body will have to use mostly stored fat as fuel.

So not only will you get increased muscle growth but more fat loss. Hope that answers your question.

Cliff

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Jarrad
Posted Fri, 12/27/2013 - 00:02

what about if the cardio was many hours before weights?

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C Winston
Posted Wed, 01/01/2014 - 10:12

Thanks for explaining a common misconception about performing cardio "before" or "after a weight training session. I have read many articles stating to perform it "before" so that one can burn calories/fat or warm up the muscles.

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bik
Posted Fri, 08/05/2011 - 03:05

Hey cliff that was kind of info i was looking for im 17 i used to be fat i lost 40 pounds in 2 1/2 months but still got belly fat i want to get lean and get some packs going i use no supplements except for protein i was wondering if you can help me with a plan to achieve my goal
Thanks

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Mon, 08/08/2011 - 10:56

Hey Bik,

First congrats on losing 40 lbs. That is awesome! The good news is that you don't need supplements to get a great six pack. The first bit of advice I would give you is to keep losing fat. If you still can't see your abs then that means that there is still fat on top of them. If you keep losing total body fat, it is bound to come off your abs eventually.

Just make sure you have a diet plan that will keep you losing weight, a training program that will build muscle, and keep going until you can see them. Laying out a full diet and training program is something I really only do for my clients. If you are interested just shoot me an email at IntensityIsEverything@gmail.com

If you want more info on training your abs you can check out my article called ABSsolutely Better Abs. Hope that help.

Cliff

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RJ
Posted Tue, 08/09/2011 - 12:37

Hi Chris,

I’m a 29 year female weighing 54kgs. I have weight to lose all over but I tend to put a lot of the weight on my thighs. I have short fat legs, quite chunky. I think from bone structure and fat. But I think I have big muscles underneath all the fat as I can push very high weights when doing leg press (I select 100 on the leg press machine, not sure if that’s kgs or lbs).
I have been going to body pump classes at my local gym which focuses on low weight high reps.
I also do an insanity DVD workout 2/3 times a week (my heart rate tends to be between 75%-83%). I also run on treadmill for 20-30 min once a week at high intensity keeping my heart rate at 80-90% of max heart rate.
My stats are:
Weight : 54.2 kgs
Hight : 155 cm
Waist / Hip = 67/82
Body fat : 22.9%.

I would like to get my body fat percentage to approx 18% (to athletic levels).
My daily calorie intake is between 1600-1800 cals.
Can you kindly advise on how i can effectively lose this excess body fat.

Many thanks,

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Tue, 08/09/2011 - 18:37

Hey RJ,

Thanks for reading. Here are a few changes that I would make to your routine. First, I think you are good keeping the Insanity workouts and the one cardio session per week. Count this as your cardio.

I don't know how many times per week you do the body pump class but I would start lifting weights more regularly. Even using heavy weights will not make you get big, it will only help you burn more fat. Women do not bulk very much. My wife lifts as heavy as she possibly can and she is tiny.

Lastly and most importantly I would start measuring how much protein, carbs, and fat you take in on a daily basis. I can't give you too many specifics because I don't know your individual metabolism, but I would venture to say that you need to lower calories a little. I would try lowering to about 1500 per day every day and that should get the fat coming off nicely.

Hope that helps.

Cliff

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Bradley
Posted Thu, 08/25/2011 - 19:02

Thanks learned alot should help with gcse biology :P
What do you think of running to the gym working out then running back its about a 4 mile round trip?

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Tue, 08/30/2011 - 10:28

I wouldn't really recommend doing that because cardio before weight will hurt your progress. The reason for this is because when you run your body uses a combo of stored fat and stored carbs (glycogen) for fuel. When you weight train your body only uses stored carbs for fuel. If you run first you will use up some of your glycogen leaving less available for you weight training session. This will make you weaker on all your lifts. If you lift first then you will use up a lot of your stored carbs (glycogen) which will not hinder your cardio because instead of using a mix of carbs and fat, your body will use mostly stored fat as your main fuel source. So get your weight training in first then follow that with cardio.

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Sonny
Posted Wed, 04/10/2013 - 21:08

Hi I'm at crossfit 4/5 days a week at night and I am doing cardio in the mornings 2/3 times a week for my cardio I ride bike on hill settings for 30mins row2ks then run 3ks it takes me around 50/55mins to finish that then I go crossfit at night am I doing to much hi intensity training I feel good but think I mite be doing to much I am training for a tuff mudder obstical course that is why I've added more exercise to normal routine usually I'd jus do crossfit 5/6 days a week

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Paul
Posted Tue, 08/30/2011 - 16:53

Alrite Cliff,

Great article mate. I'm 238lbs and would like to get down to about 189 - 196lbs and then start to build muscle. Im gettin married next july and want to use this next yr to FINALLY get my act together!! Im lookin at spending the next couple of months doing cardio with no weights programme. Is this a good idea? My second question is how many sessions and for how long should I be doing cardio per week, bearing in mind this is new to me, however I am prepared to dig deep for fast sffective results. Im starting to look at my diet aswell, but as i said this is new to me so it'll prob take a while as I'm learning as I go along.

Thanks for whatever help you can give me, and keep up the great articles!!

P.

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Thu, 09/01/2011 - 13:02

Hey Paul,

Thanks for reading! I am glad you enjoyed it. First congrats on getting married. I also think it is a great idea to lean out a bit.

Most importantly, do not stop lifting while trying to lose fat. This is a common mistake and will not give you the results you are looking for. In fact, you will get great results with minimal cardio, as long as you keep lifting weights and are on point with your diet.

If you are just starting cardio I would do 2 HIIT sessions per week to start. Then start adding a 2-3 MISS sessions for about 20-30 minutes.

If you have any questions about diet I actually have a Q and A section in the forums on this site. If you go to the forums section scroll down to the area where is says "General Chat". If you click on that you will find my Q and A thread at the top. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need.

Cliff

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dante
Posted Sat, 10/08/2011 - 03:31

heya there can u inform me what type of cardio i can doo hitt
can i do it with skipping rope cuz i like it alot or with punching bagg
i propably would skipp maximum amount of time i can like 7-8 minutes none stop or 3000 times daily that takes me around 45 min thks

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Sun, 10/09/2011 - 23:30

Hey Dante,

The truth is that is really doesn't matter what type of cardio you do for your HIIT sessions. The most important thing is that you push yourself. So pick which kind you like best and go hard.

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Scott
Posted Thu, 11/03/2011 - 07:52

Cliff..
Great article..lot's of good advice. I have a different issue in that i have kinda reached that cardio plateau as a result of a heart medication i'm on for atrial fibrillation. Amiodarone has basically killed my thyroid, which controls your metabolism, thus making it difficult to sustain a heart rate over 90 during cardio whether it's HIIT or LISS.
Very Frustrating. Not sure what to do other than continue with the weight training and cardio, but maybe be a little more aggressive with the diet. Need to lose about 25 lbs.

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Mon, 11/07/2011 - 00:38

Hey Scott,

Sorry to hear about that. You are exactly right though, you just need to let you diet do more of the work. This will actually give better results anyway. I prefer to keep cardio on the low side and make diet the main source of fat loss. Just make sure you keep up with the cardio because even though it may not be ideal it is still doing its job.

Keep training hard, I hope this helps.

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Feras
Posted Wed, 12/14/2011 - 15:36

Super Star article, give me very good background
Am from Saudi Arabia :D
I would like to ask u if i can join LISS, HIIT and wight lifting(WL) together in one day ??
or shall i separate them?? so i'll do "LISS+WL" in a day and HIIT+WL in other day??
My stats are
Hight: 194 cm
Wight: 89 kg
Waist/Hip Ratio 38/42= 0.86.
and i have problem that my body fat is concentrating in the lower limps and butt !!!

Thank you so much :)

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Tue, 12/20/2011 - 11:38

Hi Feras,

Thanks for reading. Glad you liked it. To answer your question. Yes, you can lift weights and do cardio in the same day. Just make sure that you do not do your cardio right before you lift weights. It will make your weight training less effective. So do your weights first then do your LISS or HIIT.

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Wessam
Posted Sun, 03/11/2012 - 07:41

Dear Cliff
thank you for the great info.
i need your advise, i have fat around my belly and iv been training for around 18 months now but i still cant see my packs, i was thinking of cardio, and which will be better for me to run or to walk fast.
thank you

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Tue, 03/20/2012 - 15:05

First off, good for you for keeping at it. If you keep at it you'll get it. I would suggest you run. Walking is just too low intensity. The higher intensity cardio is a better option. On my Moderate intensity cardio sessions I run at a moderate pace. On my High intensity sessions I do all out sprints. They are brutal but they work. Utilize both and this will help.

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Roni
Posted Tue, 03/13/2012 - 14:42

Cliff,

One of many of you're articles I have read in the last few days after coming across you in google. Each one has been excellent, clear, concise and informative. I have just turned up the heat on my training currently working with a workout designed for me by a PT to bulk up whilst staying lean. Question for you, I have turned up the gym visits to 5 per week each session around 2-3 hours allowing for weight training, core development and CV (im one of the haters!!!). As I'm sure you come across often I end up working arms and chest each session regardless of my best intentions to give them a day off for recuperation and repair...... Is the 2 days per week they are getting to rest and repair sufficient to allow for the most efficient development of the muscles? Regard supplements I have 60g maximuscle cyclone pre work out, 30g whey with 10g creatine post workout and 4-6 amino acid capsules in the evening, all as a supplement to a high carb morning intake and high protein afternoon /evening intake as part of my standard diet... Would appreciate your thoughts and any tips to really push on, I'm in it for the long haul, now 2 years into moderate training program and as I say time to really step up!

Regards

Roni in the UK

Keep up the great work!

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Cliff Wilson
Posted Tue, 03/20/2012 - 15:17

Hey Roni,

Thanks for following along with my articles. I am glad I can be of help. I don't want to step on your trainers toes so if he has you on a plan I would follow that. I would get away from training the arms and chest everyday. Gives those parts a break. lol.
If you wanted a new program I have one I posted on the forum called German Volume Overload Training. For some reason it won't let me post a link here. So just head over to the forum and search for German Volume Overload Training and the thread should come up.

If you are looking to push it to the next level then I would also start counting your protein, carbs and fat daily. This will really help you make sure you are getting what you need. If you had any more questions I do have a Q and A on the forum here. It is under the General Chat section. So if you have any questions ask me on there and I'll get to it.

Keep up the good work Roni. If you do I am sure you will get where you want to be in time!

Cliff

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Tamara
Posted Wed, 03/28/2012 - 11:47

Hi Cliff,

This is a great article, very informative and has cleared up a few mysteries I had!

However, I am still a little confused about the balance of HIIT, LISS, and MISS cardio. You suggest to combine both HIIT and LISS cardio sessions per week, but where does MISS factor in? If it's a very effective form of cardio, then should I consider integrating that into my weekly cardio regimen? If you could elaborate on this a bit more, that would be great.

Also, what would be an example of MISS cardio (Ex: 20-30 min. jogging on the treadmill)? I'm very toned right now, but am striving to become more lean and muscular (secretly I am considering fitness/figure competing) so it's crucial for me to really understand the the mechanics of this whole cardio process.

Thanks for your help!

Tamara

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Dana
Posted Sat, 03/31/2012 - 06:24

Cliff,
I'm a deployed soldier with some time constraints and am usually only able to do cardio or WT at one time then the other later in the day around 10-12 hrs apart. Often it is more practical for me to do my cardio in the morning and was wondering if this might effect my WT that much later int he day.
Thank you

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nancy smith
Posted Tue, 04/03/2012 - 19:52

I try to do sean t hip hop abs everyday. Is this a bad thing to do it everyday?

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Faust
Posted Fri, 04/13/2012 - 01:04

do you even need to do cardio if you're alrdy calorie deficeit?

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flat belly
Posted Fri, 05/04/2012 - 09:36

Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite
reason appeared to be on the web the easiest thing
to be aware of. I say to you, I certainly get irked while people think about worries that
they just do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon
the top and also defined out the whole thing without having
side effect , people can take a signal. Will probably be back to get more.
Thanks

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TalllPaul
Posted Fri, 07/13/2012 - 01:17

Great article.

I have started doing weights and trying to get into shape after a few years of practically no exercise, although I am not super overweight I do have a bit of a stomach which I am hoping to get rid of and build muuscle, tone up.

Just wondering, is it good to do muscle building exercises and after that session an hour of cardio, be it 30 on running machine and 30 on bike. Sometimes I have read that it is best to do one at a time although I have also read it is good to do them both as muscle building also helps to burn fat.

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Sadie
Posted Tue, 08/07/2012 - 15:46

Hey Cliff, very interesting article! I'm a 19yro female and i've always had an issue with my weight since puberty. my stats are:
bust: 34 inches
waist: 33 inches
hips: 42.5 inches
height: 5ft 7.5"
weight: 12st 11 lbs or 181 lbs

I'm looking for an exercise regime that will help me lose 11- 16 lbs between now and December, in time for my 20th birthday and get down to a BMI of 24.6-ish.
I feel like i need a push cus i'd like to target my stomach, thighs/calves and buttocks but i don't know how to go about it in an effective, long-lasting way cus when i get a wave of motivation to exercise, i'll do a 30 min workout on the Jillian Michaels 30 day shred dvd one day but i can't get past the 3rd day hump. I also seem to have low willpower when it comes to avoiding sweet foods. Any advice?

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Jeff
Posted Wed, 08/29/2012 - 22:59

I don't usually post comments but I thought this was a great article and well written! I agree with you that doing both will yield the best results. I think it is also important to try different methods and see what works for you in real life. You can debate on the internet the merits of both all day long but it all boils down to what actually delivers results. Again, great job.

Jeff

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rj
Posted Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:01

Hey clif..great artical by the way. I recently am 235ish body fat at 35%...i work out 5days aweek split days ...i do cardio on the eliptical for 30 to 45mins on lvl7 usually burning around 350 calories..im going in mornings and then after weight training i do aanother 25-30 mins..Doese this seem to be overkill on cardio...im eating round 2000calories.i just want to drop the bf not lose muscle...my gmail rogerjohnson60@gmail..all help is greatly appreciated .....rj

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Vincent
Posted Sun, 09/30/2012 - 08:09

Hey cliff, awesome article, very informative adds up knowledge. Im 35yo for two months now i woke up early daily 5am and run moderately for 30 to 45 minutes, since im working at 8am, so i need to stop at 6am to prepare myself to work, then in the afternoon i do my weight lifting(my program). two months ago I weigh 98kgs now i weigh 89. please help me by telling me that what im doin is right or im misleading.

Thanks if you can reply me with some hints.

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John
Posted Mon, 10/22/2012 - 11:38

ive been doing HIIT everyday for 2 weeks already as suggested by my friend. but ive been experiancing pain on my shin ; leg and somewhere near my heart am I doing anything wrong ??

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Nicole Miller
Posted Tue, 11/06/2012 - 09:33

Nice article ! I am wondering if you could give an example of the LIIS training at moderate levels. for instance if I jog instead of walk over 3 miles etc? Or jog with little spurts of running? I also take allot of kickboxing classes and it seems that the trainers use a little bit of both ( HIIT and LIIS), not sure if I should count Kickboxing as HIIT or LISS? Nicole

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Wendy Cronin
Posted Fri, 11/09/2012 - 14:30

I am 52, I've been going to the gym for 4 years, very faithfully. I am fairly toned everywhere except my stomach/abs. I can't seem to get rid of the extra layer. Is it my age that is making it hard to lose this? I realize now that I am going about my excersice routine wrong, I always start with cardio then do weight training and core. I will change this up next week. I tried HITT but really don't like how I feel after, so I have gone back to my 45 minute cadio work out. Any tips for an older lady?

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Scott Ramsdell
Posted Mon, 11/12/2012 - 08:06

Cliff,
Is it true that you can gain body fat under your abs as well as ontop of them? I would assume to lose the fat the combination of HIIT and LISS will work to remove that fat as well? Thanks Scott

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LaRaZZi
Posted Sat, 11/24/2012 - 21:57

What about the high intensity cardio while on a ketogenic diet? After one knows that they are definitely fat-adapted, wouldn't sprint 8 cardio, 20 min hiit cardio, and or 16min MaxOT cardio be useful especially when ingesting appropriate anoints of glutamine, creatine, and BCAA's? There has to be some CURRENT studies regarding keto-dieting and HIIT cardio strategies. I have only found one person who has been actively researching this is Dr. Mercola.

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Zoe
Posted Tue, 11/27/2012 - 09:06

Hey,

I am trying to get my HIIT perfected a bit, I was walking on the treadmill on 6 for 2 minutes and then running on 12 for 1 minute, for 45 minutes. After reading this article, I am assuming this is way too long and I probably need to be running on say 9 and then sprinting on 12? for a total of 20 minutes.

Also the lower intensity work out cardio everyday, I usually walk on the treadmill for an hour on a high incline, can you suggest other forms of Lower intensity cardio or can it literally be anything, so long as your heart rate is around 65% and your doing it for say one hour?

Lastly off topic a bit, would you say that super setting weight exercises is better than say doing the same one 3-4 sets with a rest in between? I think for some reason I always thought you pick two exercises one that works on a larger muscle group and alternate it with one of a smaller muscle group, as long as one exercise you pull and the other you push... with minimal rest. I am not sure if this is way off track

Any help would be appreciated, this article was extremely helpful

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Ekong Uko
Posted Wed, 11/28/2012 - 13:22

I really enjoy reading your article, very informative. I have some questions for you regarding my workout and goals. I am over 50 and in excellent shape. I am interested I taking my workout to another level, by getting my body shredded. i don't have enough information on the proper dieting to achieve my goal. Now, this where you can help me.

First, these are my stats: I weigh 220 lbs, 6 feet tall, 25% BMI, and work out 4 times a week (mainly weight lifting with very little cardio). Second, I eat fairly decent meal, about 2,000 calories a day but not sure the break down of protein, carbohydrate, & fat.
Q 1. What is the ratio of protein, carbohydrate & fat I should be consuming daily?
Q 2. How much calories should i be consuming daily?

Please help. Your advise is much appreciated.

Ekong UKo

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Mohammed
Posted Tue, 12/04/2012 - 20:56

Hey hope use reply back... I heard that low intensity cardio puts on more fat is that true? Thanks. Appreciate your help.

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Joey
Posted Wed, 12/05/2012 - 11:38

No - your diet will add fat. 

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