So what is best cardio exercise when it comes to burning fat and losing weight?
When I started my pursuit of health and weight lose years ago I did what is most commonly thought as the best way to lose weight and burn fat, long distance running. After awhile of running 3-6 miles at least 4 days a week I had lost a bit of weight but also picked up a few new problems with my body. My legs never felt like they were getting proper rest from the repeat pounding of running every day and my legs never felt weaker. One day I was reading and found an article about interval training focusing on sprints. From that point on it is the only type of cardio exercise I would ever do and my legs never bother me anymore.
What is interval training?
Generally people refer to routines with sprinting and rest periods as HIIT (high intensity interval training) By definition it is alternating periods of short intense anaerobic exercise with less-intense recovery periods. Sets of sprints for HIIT usually last anywhere from 10-30 minutes depending on the intensity level of the sprints. These short bouts of intense sprints improve exercise capacity and conditioning, glucose metabolism, fat burning, strengthen the legs, (especially with the hill sprint variation of HIIT) and a number of other vital things to aid in burning fat and losing weight.
What makes sprints a better cardio exercise for burning fat and losing weight?
One of the best things about HIIT is that you get more done in less time. My average HIIT session usually lasts 20 minutes, compared to the hour I’d spend when I was running distance. A study by Gibala et al. Explained that 2.5 hours of sprint interval training produced similar biochemical muscle changes to 10.5 hours of long distance endurance training. HIIT raises the resting metabolic rate (RMR) for the next 24 hours due to excess oxygen consumption, and may improve maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max) far better than doing only traditional, long distance aerobic workouts So HIIT gets more done in less time.
A simple and effective routine is finding a good steep hill and running at 100% up the hill and then simply walking down the hill as the rest period then repeating. Routines can get more complex but that isnt always needed. One important thing is to always change it up even if it’s small changes because in the long run they can boost your fitness level and get you closer to your goals weither it’s to burn fat, lose weight, or just further your fitness level.