OK.  So I understand from the emails I've received that some of you out there are still not convinced that steady state (slow) cardio doesn't work.  Please let me be clear.  I'm not saying it doesn't work, I'm giving you legitimate research that proves it does not work as effectively as interval cardio or circuit training for losing body fat efficiently. 

I wouldn't give you inaccurate information, believe me.  It wouldn't be fair.  You rely on me to do the work of investigation and then pass on what I learn so that you can benefit.  I am determined to make sure that you have all the necessary information to get to your body transformation goals as quickly and safely as possible.

Analysis of a 25 year study regarding diet, exercise or diet plus exercise

Plain and simple, what they found was that after having analyzed over 400 studies comparing diet and diet plus aerobic exercise, they concluded that aerobic exercise does not provide a significant advantage over dieting alone.

I still hear some grumbling in the background. So let's take it to the next level.  Let's see what the research says when we put the two concepts (interval training vs steady state training) head to head.

A Comparison of the Effects of Interval Training vs. Continuous Training on Weight Loss and Body Composition

So what did they find.  Here's the quick and dirty:

  • Group one: Interval Training

  • Group two: Steady State Training

  • Both groups trained 3 times per week -- burned 300 cals for 8 weeks

  • The interval training group showed a -4.4% change in body fat whereas the low intensity steady state group exhibited a +1.2% change in body fat (meaning the interval group lost on average 4.4% body fat, while the steady state group gained 1.2%).

So again you ask, what works better.  For one don't forget, with permission from your doctor, intervals is an outstanding way to kick up the intensity of the cardio you're already doing.  To add variety to your cardio check out Kettlebell swings as another alternative.  And lastly as a quick note, if you just can't stand doing cardio, try creating a circuit utilizing weights or bands where you do 4-5 movements in a row before taking a break (little secret, if you alternate upper body with lower body exercises you'll get even more bang for the buck).

I do hope that helps give you even more reason to get off the steady state cardio wagon.  I challenge you to give my suggestions a try for 4 weeks and see the drastic changes that take place.

I'll have two more studies for you next week.  And by the way if you didn't get a chance to check out Battling Ropes on Friday as a great change of pace from your regular cardio routine click here.