Performing steady state cardio shouldn’t be dismissed– be that performing 200 kettlebell swings, going for a 5 mile run, or just skipping for an hour. When you do this, you will burn a LOT of calories due to the sheer amount of time – and this will certainly be more than you’ll get from 10 minutes of HIIT (high intensity interval training). Think of HIIT as being useful when you want to work out in a shorter amount of time – it’s more efficient, but you can only keep it up so long.
It’s also brutal and not for beginners. The other benefit of steady state though is what it does for your general fitness and your energy levels. If you can maintain exertion throughout a steady state workout, then you will be taxing your heart a lot. This is good because it will allow the left ventricle to enlarge, just as any other muscle responds to training.
When that happens, it means that you’ll be able to move more blood around the body with each pump. This is very important because it means in turn that you’ll be able to more efficiently deliver blood, nutrients and oxygen to the muscles. It also means that when you’re not training, your resting heart rate will be lower.
This can actually benefit hypertrophy when you’re resting and it will help you to sleep far more efficiently so that you wake up feeling more rested and better able to tackle the day ahead – workout and all! Just running 5 miles a week is more than enough to see your resting heartrate and your VO2 max improve.
This will not only burn a lot of calories but it will also help to support an active lifestyle and especially when it comes to training. This is recommended for everyone. But if you want to lose more weight, then you can of course increase the ratio of CV (cardiovascular training) to lifting. That might mean that you add in lots of HIIT sessions, or it might mean that you maintain your steady state for much longer.