Health: Why slow and steady cardio can win the race!
PERSONAL TRAINER BEN LUCAS ON HOW STEADY CAN WIN THE RACE
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the benefits of HighIntensity Interval Training (HIIT). But there’s a lowintensive alternative that’s generating some serious buzz. Short for Low-intensity Steady State cardio, LISS is the slower, steadier sister to HIIT – but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t pack some serious health benefits. ‘Despite all the noise stating that we should all be doing HIIT all the time, LISS is actually something that should definitely be in your weekly training repertoire,’ explains Ben Lucas from flowathletic.com.au.
WHAT IS LISS?
Whether your go-to move is walking, cycling, swimming (or yoga like Miranda Kerr), the key to LISS training is to keep a steady heart rate. ‘LISS is when you train at a steady state, such as 50 per cent of your max heart rate, over an extended period of time,’ Ben explains. ‘A LISS workout may be a 1-hour to a 90-minute walk, or running on the treadmill at a cruisy speed or a stationary bike. HIIT is working out hard, getting sweaty for a shorter period of time.’
WHY YOU SHOULD TRY IT
‘Not many of us can do back-to-back HIIT workouts every day, and if you do, you need to be aware of the inflammation and potential burnout that may occur as a result if you don’t take time to recover,’ Ben explains. ‘A LISS workout is a good option on a rest day. It is also great for stress management.’
What’s more, it can also give you a boost on your HIIT days. ‘It’s a great low-impact way to work your ligaments, tendons, joints and muscles in preparation for when you want to crank up the intensity.’ Another bonus? ‘Since recovery is quicker with LISS compared to with HIIT, you can do back-to-back sessions which means more moving and less sitting!’
YES, YOU CAN LOSE WEIGHT!
Regular 45- to 60-minute LISS sessions can make your body more efficient at burning fat. ‘If you’re doing three to four days of cardio and two to four days of weight training per week, try to make only one or two of those cardio sessions LISS workouts,’ Ben advises. ‘It’s good for cardiovascular conditioning, fat burning, active recovery and it’s good for stress relief.’
‘Many of us can relate to waking up tired and deciding not to go to our HIIT workout, but with LISS there is really nothing stopping you,’ Ben adds. Best of all, it’s social. ‘LISS is also great because you can socialise while you do it. There is nothing worse than trying to go for a hard run or workout and having someone try to talk to you the entire time!’