This October I have been talking a lot about HIIT (high intensity interval training) due to the launch of my #HalloweenHIIT Challenge. As much as I love HIIT training, the problem in past years has become that people do it too often, which can cause injury, burnout, or lack or results. You should be complimenting HIIT training with days off where you focus on strength training, mobility (stretching or yoga) and steady state cardio. The question I’ve been asked recently is “What exactly is steady state cardio?” I’m so glad you asked . . .
WHAT is Steady State Cardio?
Steady State Cardio is simply any cardiovascular exercise where you have continuous steady effort (consistent speed and level of intensity) opposed to intervals where your heart rate is going up and down like a rollercoaster ride, like HIIT training. Activities that would be considered steady state cardio: walking, jogging, biking, elliptical training, stair climbing, rowing, and even aerobics or cardio dance.
WHO Can Do Steady State Cardio?
Anyone! In fact everyone who has been cleared by their doctor to exercise should! The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Medicine) recommends that adults moderately exercise (think steady state cardio) for 2.5 hours or more per week and intensely exercise for an hour and 15 minutes per week (think HIIT training) on average.
By the way if you’re pregnant, you can still do steady state cardio. I have many options in my Pregnancy Workout Essentials Collection like Bump ‘N Box and Bump Dance, or you can always check out some of my original pregnancy workouts, like Sweat Sport or Sweat Funk. Just remember to follow my Cardio Rules for Pregnancy.
WHY Should You Incorporate Steady State Cardio Into Your Workout Regimen?
There are so many benefits . . . burning calories, losing weight, increasing cardio and muscle endurance, boosting your mood, lowering your anxiety, and reducing your blood pressure and risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. It is also less stress on your body than HIIT training, and you can usually recover more easily from your workout.
WHERE Can You Do Steady State Cardio?
You can do steady state cardio anywhere – outside, inside, winter, summer, in a gym or at-home. If you’re at a gym or have cardio machines at home, you can find some of my favorite low-impact options HERE.
I look forward to hearing in the comments about your favorite form of steady state cardio or any questions you may still have.