I'm 38, male 5'6", weigh between 150-155 pounds, and I do strength training for about three to four hours per week, aside from the cardiovascular workouts, the present question is based on the latter.

For the cardiovascular exercises, I like to two things:

(i) do between 25-30 minutes of speedy walk (between 6km/hour to 6.6 km/hour, i.e. 3.73 miles/hour to 4.10 miles/hour) on a maximally elevated treadmill (there are 15 elevation settings, and I always use the 15 mark).

(ii) But at times when I feel like it, I also do HIIT - on a non-elevated treadmill at a speed of 13km/hour = 8.07 miles/hour). On the days I do HIIT, I do a maximum of four of one minute to 90 second short bursts of these. I walk in the rest intervals on the treadmills, that burns about 10-11 calories/minute. But my total duration of cardio is less than (i) above, not more than 18 minutes I'd say.

Here are my observations regarding calorie burn rate, given the readings from the treadmill are correct:

For (i) (steady state cardio, detailed above): I noticed that I burn between 13 to 14 calories per minute. The total amount of calories I burn is between 350 to 400 that day.

For (ii) (HIIT detailed above): roughly 15 calories a minute. The total calories burnt is (roughly): 4 x 15 + 15 x 10 = 210 calories maximum.

So purely from the standpoint of burning calories, I'm definitely burning a lot more calories when I'm doing the steady state, if I don't consider any afterburn effect. I don't know my resting heart rate yet (!) My goal is fat burn, I'm happy with my muscle amount.

My question is:

Given the above details and that I've been working out for about ten years now, should I just choose HIIT over the steady state one, or should I stick to the steady state one? IN essence, how much is the afterburn effect going to contribute anyway - is it that much to effectively help me burn more fat?

  • 4
    How are you measuring metabolic rate? You’re reporting the sort of precision we see in metabolic ward studies or studies using doubly labeled water, which I’m assuming you aren’t using, so I don’t think you can be as sure as you seem to be in your question.
    – Thomas Markov
    Aug 24, 2022 at 10:28
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    Also, remember that working out to lose fat isn't the best way to go - it will lower your basal metabolic rate. fitness.stackexchange.com/a/44990/32817
    – gustafc
    Aug 24, 2022 at 14:00
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    "given the readings from the treadmill are correct" - they will absolutely not be correct. At best they are a vague estimate, at worst completely useless. You would need to be hooked up to some pretty sophisticated kit to measure calorie burn accurately.
    – John M
    Oct 5, 2022 at 10:16
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    I would be highly suspect of those calorie numbers, yes. Burning 700-800 calories an hour is roughly the same level of activity as running at an 8 minute mile pace. (For a mythical average person who doesn't really exist, of course.)
    – Thegs
    Oct 5, 2022 at 22:37

1 Answer 1


I would say do LISS. Weight training is not HIIT but it is similar. Hardwork and rest periods. If you see no changes in fat loss, why tire yourself more?

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