Cardio Vs. Interval Training

by David Zerbs

There are many differences between cardio and interval training. Although traditional cardio is good for strengthening your heart, interval training improves your heart and lungs’ performance tenfold without running around. In addition, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) helps you to realize steady improvements in your speed, stamina, agility, strength, and your shape. Interval training has been verified and is highly recommended by marathoners, personal trainers, military officers, and Olympic athletes. The main difference between cardio and interval training is that interval training presents you with infinite potential. That is, it gives you an opportunity to improve and tweak most things while avoiding the boredom and stagnation that comes with traditional cardio exercise.

Special Benefits of Interval Training

Its workouts are not lengthy. With interval training you will not be expected to train for more than 45 minutes. This duration incorporates warm-ups and stretching exercises. Your results are not likely to plateau. The main setback of cardio training is stagnation before you achieve the desirable results. However, interval training enables you to reach your desirable goals without stagnation in the middle. It works within months. Once you begin the interval workouts you are guaranteed to see changes within months. This is partly because there are no stagnations because your body is exposed to different workouts that it cannot adapt to.

Variables Of Interval Training

Unlike cardio exercise that only has three major variables, interval training has 11 variables. The combination of these variables brings about the tweaks and improvements. Also, the increase in intensity of the workouts as well as swapping of exercises that target on the same sets of muscles, helps in achieving quick results. They include repetitions, lifting form, repetition time, weights, exercise variability, recovery period between workouts, rests between supersets, bodyweight vs. weighted exercises, exercise duration, intensity level, and speed.

Effective Heart Health: Traditional Cardio or Interval Training Way?

It has always been argued that traditional cardio is the best way to strengthen your heart. Although it is true, the body has a tendency of adapting to a workout plan like traditional cardio workout because it is repetitive and monotonous. On the other hand, interval training not only works out the heart but also the lungs and the other muscles. Essentially, interval training works the organs to the maximum within short stints of time. This prevents your body from adapting to the workouts and becoming stagnant. Equally, interval training strengthens your heart more than traditional cardio because it works the cardiovascular muscles to the maximum.

Traditional Cardio Workout Myth

It is popularly believed that traditional cardio has a fat burning zone after you work out for some time. However, although intense activity may aid in burning of body fats, the body gets used to the speed and intensity, and the results start to dwindle over time. It is this state that is commonly referred to as plateau. That is, the results stagnate no matter the speed and intensity of the workouts.


I'm a fitness enthusiast from New York. I have been writing reviews of fitness and diet programs for over two years. If you have questions about anything I have reviewed, don't hesitate to shoot me an email.

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