HIIT vs Cardio: What’s Better?

One of the most common questions to come across my desk is about cardio…

“Kate what’s the reason why long cardio is bad for you, a couple of girls asked me why I do none. Need a simple answer. Thanks love your stuff, it really worked for me.”
– Ellen-Mary

Great question!

hiit vs cardio

You probably know by now long cardio workouts are not the best way to burn fat. However…

Now let me be clear… I’m not about to go on a cardio bashing rant. In fact, I really enjoy going out for a run on the weekends to get fresh air and clear my head. It’s good for my mental health.. but by no means the focus of my program entirely.

OK. Here’s the two main problems with doing ONLY cardio for fat loss:

#1: Overuse Injuries From Repetitive Movement

If you run or spin for 45 minutes, you’ll end up doing about 4500 repetitions of the same movement. And if you have even the slightest biomechanical problem in your body (like most people do), it will magnify the issue and turn into an injury hot spot.

It’s just like rubbing two sticks together…you’ll create friction that will start a fire. (that’s if you’re handy out camping lol)

But in your body, you’ll generate friction and end up wearing down your connective tissue until… BOOM injury.

KV loves you and does not want you to get hurt!

#2: Your Body Adapts Quickly and You Can Hit a Weight Loss Plateau

Now yes, this can happen with any type of exercise if you do it continuously without any progression… however it tends to happen more with cardio.

You see, your body will quickly adapt to low-moderate intensity cardio.

If you do these “fat-burning exercises” everyday, like jogging, you could possibly SLOW DOWN your fat loss and do more damage to your metabolism…

And I have more bad news.

While you burn 230-300 calories during your cardio workout, once you stop – so does your fat burning.

It literally comes to a screeching halt.

SO what’s makes HIIT more efficient?

The Afterburn effect.

You see, higher intensity interval exercise burns more carbs than fats. So why do so many studies show higher intensity exercise actually burns more FAT than low intensity aerobics?

Research shows high intensity exercise burns a lesser percentage of fat stores during the session. However, burning carbs (glycogen) as a fuel during exercise will result in burning more fat after you workout, due to excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) also known as the infamous “afterburn effect”.

So in terms of homeostasis, let me explain…

When you deplete your carbs stores and use glycogen as fuel during high intensity exercise, your body responds by using the fat stores as the main fuel to keep your body functioning after your workout..

So if you continue to push yourself to higher intensities each time you train creates metabolic disturbance, this prevents your body from adapting to the exercise so you continue burning fat stores.

Each time you workout, you need to do something a little different. I’m not saying completely change every exercise in your workout and “confuse your muscles” (and yourself) – but you need to lift heavier, go faster or take less rest time between sets.


Routine cardio workouts like jogging or elliptical may contribute to weight gain, because they demand you increase your energy output. Since your body is always trying to stay in balance, this type of movement may actually act as a biological cue to make you eat more.

Researchers also suggest cardio exercise may trigger additional eating, because it depletes glycogen stores in the liver and muscle in order to make glucose available for fuel.

The reality is, doing more aerobic cardio exercise makes you feel hungry. I know, because I used to be STARVING all the time and binge eat after marathon long runs. Plus, I was NOWHERE near as lean as I am today.

Compare that to post HIIT workouts? KV is not hungry.

Speaking of HIIT, did you know if you do the right exercises in the right order at the right intensity, you can actually LOSE weight in as little as 10 minutes…

You can increase your energy and vitality by learning how to strengthen and reshape your entire body… so that you can play with your kids and grandkids without your back, knees or joints locking up in pain.

You’ll save time by learning how to do the exercises correctly and use High Intensity Interval Training the RIGHT WAY…

And see better results in the next 21 days than you’ve seen in years. You can take the Challenge at the link below:

==> Take the 21-Day Bodyweight HIIT Challenge here

I’ve put the “best of the best” workouts into a simple, easy to follow video program so anyone (beginner to advanced) can just press play, follow along, and accelerate their fat burning immediately.

Enjoy :)

==> Take the 21-Day Bodyweight HIIT Challenge here

Have an awesome day!

Your Coach,