(Natural News) Personal training experts recommend that a combination of low-intensity training and high-intensity training will lead to better fitness and health results. They explained in an article published on the website Daily Mail Online why low-intensity workouts are as important as high-intensity workouts.
Low-intensity sustained state (LISS) cardio exercise is equally important as a high-intensity exercise for maintaining fitness. This fitness trend is also known as the “lazy girl workout.” LISS is described as any form of low-intensity cardio exercise done for an extended period of time — typically for up to one hour — that keeps the heart rate consistent throughout the workout. In turn, this enhances cardiovascular endurance. Exercises included in this type of workout are a light two-mile jog and swimming laps in the pool as well as walking with your dog for an hour.
The trainers recommended adding a light workout to your regular training routine because it can help build muscle. Even though a light exercise does not build strength or muscle as much as a high-intensity workout, it still provides overall health benefits that are equally as important.
“If you are trying to improve overall cardiovascular endurance, you will need steady state cardio, but there is always place for high-intensity,” Rui Li, personal trainer and owner of New York Personal Training, told Daily Mail Online.
Contrary to LISS, high-intensity interval training (HITT) focuses on short, all-out work periods separated by rest periods. Many gym enthusiasts focus on high-intensity workouts to build muscle. (Related: Don’t have an hour to work out — how about three minutes? Experts say high intensity is effective but warn that you may love it.) However, if you are trying to lose weight, you will have to do both types of workout.
Li explained that fat requires oxygen in order to metabolize, and LISS workouts allow more oxygen to be available to the body. For example, if you are lifting weights and you find it hard to catch your breath between sets, Li suggested that you perform two-mile runs for a couple of days or row to increase the endurance of the heart. In addition, it will help you recover from intense workout faster.
However, performing low-intensity workouts alone will not lead to a toned body. Training experts noted that high-intensity exercises should also not be skipped because it will leave you at a state without progress and you will not be able to build strength and muscles. Before engaging in highly repetitive exercises, strong core and hip muscles should be built first.
“No amount of steady state cardio is going to improve that tremendously, so you have to make sure you have strong glutes, hip flexors, and deep abdominal in order to sustain those low-intensity workouts,” she explained.
Kevin Richardson, owner and founder of Naturally Intense Training, suggested that LISS is more of a mental health exercise rather than a physical exercise as people go on long walks to clear and relax the mind.
“Physiologically, you can’t have adaptation from low-intensity because the human body responds when it’s doing something it hasn’t done before,” Richardson explained.
The benefits of exercise will not take effect if you do not follow a proper diet. In order to gain muscle and lose weight at the same time, it is suggested to consume at least 25 to 30 grams (g) of protein every meal. Moreover, lose weight slowly as drastic weight drops also result to muscle loss. Lastly, be patient as it will become harder to build muscle while losing fat as you get more trained and leaner.
Both trainers said that the type of workout you should engage in relies on what your fitness goals are.
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