High-intensity interval training or endurance workout? HIIT is one of the best ways to increase fitness performance, lose weight, and overall health. But is it really better than endurance exercises? That’s what we’re going to find out.
High-intensity interval training has become one of the most adopted types of training in the past decade in the fitness world. It provides optimal benefits in a shorter period of time in the form of high-intensive exercise.
On the other hand, endurance training packs mostly slow and long training such as cycling and running, but endurance training is a broader term that also embraces interval and circuit training. But for the sole purpose of this article, we’ll be focusing on long-distances activities.
What’s Endurance Training?
By the word’s definition, endurance means a person’s capacity to endure prolonged exercises for minutes, hours, or even for days. Endurance training aims to enhance the body’s ability to attend to the demands of activity for as long as required.
Interval training is a combination of short, high-intensity bursts of speed with slow recovery phases. For instance, an overall HIIT routine can compress two or three cycles of 4 to 5 exercises of 45 seconds each with a resting minute in between sets.
HIIT affects your metabolism in different ways than the standard cardio routine. Steady-state cardio uses one type of metabolism to convert stored fat into energy (aerobic metabolism). In contrast, HIIT uses both metabolic systems (aerobic and anaerobic).
HIIT Or Endurance Training: Which One Is The Best?
The truth is, a long and steady endurance training can burn just as many, if not more, calories than a fast HIIT routine. Before deciding which training style is more suitable for you, it’s crucial to consider where you’re at the moment, your fitness goals, and be realistic with yourself.
Both HIIT and endurance training can be demanding and exhausting, so you should align expectations with reality.
The bottom line is that both training styles are beneficial to you, but they differ in consistency — one harder and shorter, the other longer and less stressful. If you don’t know which one to choose or don’t want to pick just one, feel free to incorporate both into your fitness routine.