Wanna Lose Fat? Here Is Why HIIT Is Better Than Cardio | Kasratshala

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Wanna Lose Fat? Here Is Why HIIT Is Better Than Cardio.

Wanna Lose Fat? Here Is Why HIIT Is Better Than Cardio.

Wanna Lose Fat? Here Is Why HIIT Is Better Than Cardio.

Getting rid of unwanted things is nature’s rule. We as a human being tend to follow when we decide to lose that unwanted fat (although it is gained by our actions). Working out to lose fat is more common than you think but doing it efficiently is the key. In this article, we will discuss whether HIIT or cardio exercise is best to lose fat.

HIIT And Cardio Explained

Before explaining why HIIT is better than cardio let’s first understand what is a HIIT workout and cardio.

HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training)

HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. Alternatives for HIIT are ‘sprint interval training’ and ‘high-intensity intermittent exercise’.

When you choose to do a HIIT workout you switch between intense anaerobic exercise and very short (20-30 seconds) recovery periods.

The standard method of training with HIIT would be either

  • ‘High-intensity exercise’ where you do a workout from 30 sec to 3 minutes or
  • ‘Low-intensity exercise’ where you do a low-intensity workout for 30 sec to maximum high-intensity exercise time. The ideal time would be half of the high-intensity exercise.

Cardio Workout

Cardio stands for cardiovascular workouts. Cardio is also known as steady-state cardio. It’s a form of aerobic exercise.

Are you more confused now? Let’s go deeper and see.

What is aerobic exercise and anaerobic exercise

  • Aerobic exercise
    Lively exercises that increase the circulation of oxygen throughout the body in the blood. It also increases the rate of breathing.

Ex. running, swimming, and bicycling.

  • Anaerobic exercise
    An intense workout that produces a sudden lack of oxygen than required oxygen in the body.

Ex. Weight lifting, sprints, jumping jacks.

So with this, you pretty much get the idea of what is a HIIT workout and what is cardio. Now going to the main topic, which one is made for losing fat? I would discuss a more likely scenario to explain that to you.

20 Minutes Workout

Let’s just say you are a busy person with almost no time to workout. But one day you take a look at yourself and decide to give 20 minutes to be fit. Your main goal from this workout (which you should compulsory have) is to lose belly fat and strengthen yourself.

Let me give you a comparison of calorie burned during HIIT and cardio.

20 Minutes Cardio

Hypothetically, let’s assume that you choose to do 20 minutes cardio workout and you are a beginner (because you were too busy to workout, remember?). We are going to choose 4 beginner-friendly cardio exercises for you to perform. Let’s see how it goes,

  • Running

Running is the most common exercise which can be done going out or in the gym (also at home if you have a treadmill). For a 70kg person, running for 5 minutes will burn 50 calories.

Time- 5 minutes

Calories burned- 50 calories

  • Aerobic Dance

One of the trending exercises in the cardio department is aerobic dancing. You can find a video or course to follow on the internet. After 5 minutes, this will burn 40 calories.

Time- 5 minutes

Calories burned- 40 calories

  • Bicycling

This one is my personal favourite. This gives you speed but the ability to balance too. This is one of the best cardio exercises which after 5 minutes will burn your 50 calories.


Time- 5 minutes

Calories burned- 50 calories

  • Jogging

Since the complete exhaustion, you will end the workout session with jogging. Jogging is a good exercise to regain your breathing control and to slow down the heart. So after 5 minutes of jogging, you will burn 40 calories.

Time- 5 minutes

Calories burned- 40 calories

Are you tired yet? After these 20 minutes cardio, let’s look at our calorie chart.

  • Total calories burned– 180 calories

Moving on, I have an alternate 20 minutes workout plan just for you. Shall we?

20 Minutes HIIT Workout

Again, the workout is beginner friendly and the calorie burn is for a 70 kg person.

  • Jumping Jacks

You will start with an efficient complete body exercise jumping jacks also known as star jumps. Jumping jacks will work on your glutes, quadriceps, hip flexors along with abdominals and shoulder muscles. Jumping jacks for 4 minutes will burn 45 calories.

          Time- 4 minutes

Calories burned- 45 calories

  • Burpees

Burpees combine strength training and the sudden burst of oxygen in your body. It’s one of the best exercises you would do for strength training and losing fat. Doing burpees is harder than running or traditional weight lifting but in the end, you will know it’s worth it. Doing burpees for 4 minutes (assuming you can do 10-15 burpees a minute) you will burn 60 calories.

Time- 4 minutes

Calories burned- 60 calories

  • High Knees

This is a simple exercise with very few instructions. High knees will target and strengthen your outer hips and inner thigh areas. Also as your body will work to maintain the balance on one leg hence you will strengthen your quadriceps, buttock muscles and hamstrings too (pretty impressive). 4 minutes of high knees are all you need to burn 40 calories.

Time- 4 minutes

Calories burned- 40 calories

  • Mountain Climber

Mountain climbers are just like climbing a mountain on your floor without the mountain(coool!) is an exercise which targets your full body. Specific area of targets would be your arms, shoulders, quads, and core. Mountain climber for 4 minutes would burn 45 calories off of your body.

Time- 4 minutes

Calories burned- 45 calories

  • High-intensity Squats

Since you always wanted a strengthened lower body this is a perfect fit. Squats also develop core strength. The muscle targets are glutes, quadriceps, thighs along with your abdominal muscles. High-intensity squats for 4 minutes means burning of 40 calories.

Time- 4 minutes

Calories burned- 40 calories

Even when the workout ends, you have created the more oxygen demand in your body so your body will keep burning fats even after the workout sessions (surprise…). so when we look at the calories chart we see.

  • Total calories burned– 230+20(bonus of after-fat burning)= 250 calories

Now that you have seen you can see why HIIT is better when you want to lose fats and strengthen your muscles. Let’s look at some other benefits of HIIT.

Fat Burning For Fuel

One of the most renowned (let me exaggerate more) benefits is the after-burn effect (fat burning after finishing the workout) of HIIT.

With more intensity, the workout after-burn effect will increase. Since during a HIIT workout, you switch between exercises rapidly your metabolic flexibility increases and your body becomes more adept at burning fat for fuel. Which is awesome.

Time Limit

This is the 21st century, everything you do will be judged on efficiency. Keeping the matrices of time and output in mind, a HIIT workout is definitely a time-effective workout routine. You can craft your workout plan as per your availability of time.

Ease Of Workout Space

One of the awesome benefits of HIIT is that you could perform all the workouts at your home. Working out at home is the new workout routine new generation is trying to embrace. So while you do it why not lose that belly fat faster?

This might make you think why do I do cardio then? Shouldn’t my every day should be HIIT workout?

Doing HIIT every day

HIIT can be cruel for your heart and your metabolic system. As a beginner consults with a trainer before starting your routine. Or explaining like a workout nerd, your body needs to develop Aerobic capacity, before jumping into the high intensive training ocean.

Word Of Advice

Before starting HIIT a little cardio routine will get you in the grove. This will keep your body safe. Afterwards, once you are back in the aerobic zone, your cardio routine will help you recover faster. So you can again push yourself.

So there you have it. When you wanna lose fats, HIIT is better than cardio. But pairing a HIIT workout with cardio will give you an optimum result.

Don’t forget to share your workout routines and ideas with us.