So we drove back from our little anniversary trip yesterday morning. In an attempt to beat traffic we left at 4:30 AM, which left me with 5.5 hours of sleep for the umpteenth night in a row. Last week was just as busy and I didn’t get enough sleep, which ended with me on antibiotics for a sinus infection. (Thanks, Mama Shallal for forcing the issue of going to the Doctor to get antibiotics. Sometimes you just need your mama to tell you not to be an idiot ya know? ) The end of this story is last night I slept for 11.5 hours, reluctantly waking up at 8:30 am. I can not remember the last time I slept that long. Now I’m enjoying my breakfast of 2 eggs, lunch meat, and roasted broccoli for breakfast and typing this post. (And listening to Train radio on Pandora because nothing gets me back into the work groove faster.)
Week 43: LISS/ Steady-State Cardio
This week we are answering the oldest question in the book. What is the best type of exercise? What should you be focusing on? Well, it’s a two-part series because the spoiler alert is, there is NO BEST type of training (other than the one you enjoy.) A well-rounded program has a variety of intensity levels and training styles in it. One form that needs to be included is LISS training. LISS or Low-Intensity Steady State Cardio is easy fat burning cardio. It’s any cardio activity done at a slow cruising pace you feel like you could maintain for hours if you had too.
Examples of this type of exercise could be:
- Brisk Walking
- Light jogging
- Bike riding without resistance
- Elliptical without resistance
- Steady stair climbing at an easy pace
- light swimming
- anything other cardiovascular activity that feels like a 3-4 level of effort (on a scale of 1-10)
Benefits of LISS cardio include:
- Building your base pace (how fast you can comfortably go for long periods of time
- Translation: You will end up being able to do more work in the same amount of time, meaning you can burn more calories and you become more fit. For example, if you used to be able only to sustain 4.0 running on the treadmill for 10 minutes, now you can do 5.0 comfortably for 10 minutes. More fit = more calories with less output
- Improving your cardiovascular health without overstressing the body
- Enhancing your bodies ability to utilize fat as the fuel source during workouts.
- your body has two sources of fuel, carbohydrates are quick, but fat is longer lasting, you have to teach your body to use fat more efficiently
- Faster recovery since the workout isn’t as demanding on the body.
- Easier to stick with.
- This type of cardio doesn’t burn calories super fast, but you do it longer, so calorie burn is good.
- Improved insulin sensitivity and lipid metabolism ( body deals with sugar better and burns fat better)
Downsides of LISS/Steady-State Cardio:
- It won’t help you build muscle, power, or adaptations.
- Prolonged stress – but didn’t I say less stress earlier? Yes, but, when you get to higher levels (think marathon training), your base pace becomes higher, so you are doing more work for more extended periods of time causing prolonged stress on the body.
- Overuse injuries- repeated stress on the body day in and day out.
Take Aways LISS Cardio
Back in the day before I knew what I was doing, I rotated between the treadmill and elliptical, sometimes the bike. I ONLY did steady state cardio; I didn’t know anything about HIIT training or weight lifting. That, combined with the way too low-calorie intake I lost weight and thought I was healthier, but I was really just a smaller version of me with jacked up hormones and less muscle mass. Yes, I was smaller, but I couldn’t understand why I didn’t magically look toned and fit? However, I did develop amazing (to me) cardiovascular capabilities. (LISS cardio is well researched for its cardiovascular benefits.)
Over the weekend, Mr. Hungry and I hiked about 12-15 miles around Del Mar – La Jolla beach area. I didn’t feel super sore the next day or feel like I needed any extra recovery. I could get right back to working out, I didn’t know because of the lack of sleep and travel, but I could have. Whereas there are other days I do 20-minute high-intensity workouts that leave me sore for DAYS.
Personally, I include 1-2 days of steady state exercise per week and that is the sweet spot. Sometimes I count a long low-intensity walk with the pup and sometimes it’s a long slow training run, especially when training for races like I am now.
What about you? Do you do steady-state exercise? What’s your favorite form?
52 Healthy Habits E-Course
Did you miss this series or wish you could repeat it? No problem! I’ve put all the posts together in an e-course that directly corresponds with the healthy habits series! By focusing on one healthy habit per week you’ll be able to master the skills needed to successfully improve your health, increase your energy, and drop those unwanted pounds. The best part is, you’ll do it while barely even realizing it. These 52 habits are the habits I review with almost every single Hungry Hobby RD client. These habits are the backbone of getting off the diet train and getting the results you wanted! What are you waiting for??????
The e-course will provide supportive information such as tips and tricks to help you ingrain each healthy habit as part of your permanent lifestyle.
Cost of the automated series is $26 dollars (just 50 cents per week) for the whole year, which helps me cover the cost of automating the emails through my server. Thanks!
( Want to really plan to succeed and save money? What To Eat? Meal Plan subscriptions also come with this E-Course as part of the subscription! They also come with a supportive facebook group and a ton more goodies, check them out!)
52 HEALTHY HABITS IN 52 WEEKS SERIES:
The 52 Healthy Habits Series is about ditching the diet mindset and making small changes to improve health overall naturally leading to a healthy body composition, increased energy and improved health. Please follow along and check out the past weeks!
- Week 52: Healthy Habits Wrap Up
- Week 51: Nightly Reflection
- Week 50: Limit Harmful Chemicals
- Week 49: Find Your Tribe
- Week 48: Cultivating Positivity
- Week 47: Healthy Thanksgiving Tips
- Week 46: Check In
- Week 45: Mobility – Foam Rolling
- Week 44: HIIT Training
- Week 43: LISS or Steady State Cardio
- Week 42: Limit Alcohol
- Week 41: Eat White, Wait What?
- Week 40: Eat Blue & Purple
- Week 39: Eat Green
- Week 38: Eat Yellow/Orange
- Week 37: Eat Red
- Week 36: Learn Which Foods to Purchase Organic
- Week 35: Read the Ingredient List!
- Week 34: Focus.
- Week 33: Chew Your Food!
- Week 32: Meditation
- Week 31: Gratitude Journaling
- Week 30: Plan & Revamp Dessert- 20 Healthy Ideas
- Week 29: Two fistfuls of veggies per meal
- Week 28: Get In Veggies At Breakfast
- Week 27: Healthy Veggie Snacks
- Week 26: Nourishing Fats for the Gut (Healthy Digestion Part 4)
- Week 25: Keeping Regular – The Other Fiber (Healthy Digestion Part 3)
- Week 24: Feed The Probiotics With Prebiotic Fiber (Healthy Digestion Part 2)
- Week 23: Amazing Health Benefits of Probiotics (Healthy Digestion Part 1)
- Week 22: Check In
- Week 21: What You Will Learn From Recording Your Meals (Intuitive Eating Series Part 4)
- Week 20: Eat Until 80% Full (Hara Hachi Bu) (Intuitive Eating Series Part 3)
- Week 19: Limit Distractions While Eating (Intuitive Eating Series Part 2)
- Week 18: Gaging Your Hunger Cues (Intuitive Eating Series Part 1)
- Week 17: 10,000 Steps Per Day
- Week 16: Assess Your Caffeine Intake
- Week 15: Decrease Sugar Intake
- Week 14: Healthy Coffee Creamers (upgrade yours)
- Week 13: 3 Month Check In
- Week 12: Sleep Enough & Sleep Better
- Week 11: Schedule Your Workouts
- Week 10: Pack A Healthy Lunch (5 Ways to Create Endless Combinations)
- Week 9: Prioritizing Protein
- Week 8: How and What to Meal Prep
- Week 7: Create & Stick To Your Healthy Meal Plan
- Week 6: Get Enough Omega-3’s (Fight Inflammation)
- Week 5: What Is A Healthy Fat & How To Get Enough (Include Healthy Fats)
- Week 4: How to Spot A Healthy Carbohydrate (Upgrade Your Carbs)
- Week 3: Tips to Increase Veggie Intake (Eat Veggies)
- Week 2: 15 Healthy On the Go Breakfast Ideas (Eat BF Challenge)
- Week 1: Tips to Drink More Water