JOURNEY TO LONGEVITY AND BETTER HEALTH
A 30-Minute Workout or 10,000 Steps Per Day—Which Is Better?
By Hiranmayii Awli Mohanan
# WHAT IS HIIT?
HIIT or high-intensity interval training is a training technique in which you put in maximum effort through quick, intense bursts of exercise, followed by short, sometimes active, recovery periods. This type of training gets and keeps your heart rate up and burns more fat in less time. HIIT increases the body’s need for oxygen during the effort creating an oxygen shortage. Your body compensates by demanding more oxygen during recovery. This effect, called excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, is the key reason why intense exercise is more effective at burning fat than slower, steadier exercise.
# IS ONE REALLY MORE EFFECTIVE THAN THE OTHER?
When it comes to your health, no exercise solution is one size fits all — and it really shouldn’t come down to choosing between walking or a workout. It is recommended to mix your exercise activities from cardio to strength, to reap the best benefits. Achieving 10,000 steps per day usually means that you are relatively active, which is important. However, it doesn’t measure the intensity of exercises you perform, which is also important. The key to longevity is aerobic activities that raise your heart rate and strength and resistance training. Doctors believe that blood-pumping activities are believed to significantly lower your risk of heart disease, which is the number one cause of death around the world. Strength training is important too for it builds muscle, the most metabolically active tissue in our body and is another component of optimal health.
# UPGRADE YOUR 30 MINUTES OF MOVEMENT
When it comes to achieving the best 30 minutes of exercise possible, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) activities are the best, since they combine both aerobic exercise and strength training. This type of exercise has benefits of cardiovascular protection and lean muscle building. Whether you’re doing it at the gym or as a follow-along Youtube programme at home, the benefits of HIIT exercises truly can’t be beaten.
# KEEP TRACK OF YOUR STEPS
While HIIT training is great for you, this doesn’t mean that you should stop keeping track of those daily steps. This number gives you an indication on whether or not you’re remaining too sedentary and it can be a good motivator to get up and move (or at least complete that 30 minutes of exercise). If you’re someone who relies on a fitness tracker to count your steps, you’ll be happy to know that doctors claim it is reasonably accurate at tracking other important health metrics. Although not perfect, a fitness tracker does a reasonable job of providing physiological data for the body and has variable accuracy when tracking steps taken, heart rate, heart rate variability and sleep. You can use this device to track trends in your physiological data, which it performs well in, rather than relying on it to give you precise information, which you don’t necessarily need.