What is LISS Training and Why You Need it For Weight Loss
Updated: 2 days ago
The definitive guide to why you should be losing weight with LISS Low Intensity Interval Training
What is LISS Training and Why You Need it For Weight Loss
As a weight loss coach, personal trainer and specialist at Dennis Romatz Fitness, I use LISS training with 100% of my weight loss clients. The science of human physiology tells us that the human body burns more calories from a fat source at lower heart rates and sugars at higher heart rates. So, it's obvious that I have my already too heavy weight loss clients eliminate impact and utilize LISS for all safe and effective weight loss.
LISS training stands for Low-Intensity Steady State training. It is a form of cardiovascular exercise that involves performing low-intensity activities for an extended period. LISS training typically involves activities such as walking, bicycling or using cardio machines like treadmills and stationary bikes at a moderate intensity level.
Unlike high-intensity workouts like HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training), which involve short bursts of intense exercise followed by periods of rest or recovery, LISS training maintains a steady and consistent pace throughout the entire duration of the workout.
The primary focus of LISS training is to engage the aerobic energy system, which utilizes oxygen to produce energy. By exercising at a lower intensity, the body primarily utilizes stored fat as a fuel source, making it an effective method for fat burning. LISS training promotes endurance, cardiovascular health, and can aid in weight loss.
One of the key advantages of LISS training is its accessibility to people of different fitness levels. It is a suitable option for beginners or individuals with certain physical limitations or injuries, as it is low-impact and places less stress on the joints compared to high-impact exercises.
LISS training can be performed for varying durations depending on individual goals and fitness levels. It is commonly incorporated into fitness routines as an active recovery workout on rest days or as a less intense alternative to higher-intensity workouts. Many individuals enjoy LISS training because it allows them to engage in physical activity while still being able to hold conversations or enjoy other forms of entertainment, such as listening to music or watching TV.
Let's dive in deeper on what is LISS training and why you need it for weight loss.
10 Benefits of LISS Training
Fat burning: LISS training primarily utilizes stored fat as a fuel source, making it an effective method for burning calories and promoting weight loss.
Improved cardiovascular health: LISS training strengthens the heart and improves cardiovascular endurance, reducing the risk of heart disease and improving overall heart health.
Increased endurance: Regular LISS training helps improve stamina and endurance, allowing you to perform physical activities for longer durations without experiencing fatigue.
Low impact and joint-friendly: LISS activities such as walking, swimming, or cycling are low-impact exercises that place less stress on the joints, making them suitable for individuals with joint issues or those recovering from injuries.
Reduced muscle soreness: LISS training promotes blood flow and helps remove metabolic waste products from muscles, reducing post-workout muscle soreness and aiding in recovery.
Active recovery: LISS training can be used as an active recovery workout on rest days from more intense exercises. It helps promote blood circulation and facilitates the recovery process.
Sustainable long-term exercise: LISS training is gentle on the body and can be incorporated into daily routines without excessive strain or fatigue. It is a sustainable form of exercise that can be maintained over a long period.
Low injury risk: Due to the low-impact nature of LISS activities and the steady-state effort, the risk of injury is minimized, making it suitable for people of different fitness levels and those with specific health considerations.
Stress reduction: LISS training can have a positive impact on mental health by reducing stress levels and promoting relaxation. Engaging in low-intensity activities provides an opportunity for mindfulness and stress relief.
Accessibility and versatility: LISS training can be performed in various settings, including gyms, outdoor spaces, or even at home. It offers a wide range of activity options, such as walking, swimming, cycling, or using cardio machines, making it accessible and versatile for different preferences and circumstances.
Examples of LISS Training Exercises
Treadmill: The treadmill is a versatile piece of equipment that allows you to perform LISS training indoors. Set the treadmill to a moderate pace that you can sustain for an extended period, and walk or jog on it consistently without significant variations in speed or incline.
Walking: Walking is one of the simplest and most accessible LISS exercises. You can do it outdoors or indoors on a track or treadmill. Aim for a brisk yet comfortable pace that elevates your heart rate and keeps you in the moderate intensity range.
Cycling: Cycling, whether outdoors or on a stationary bike, is an excellent choice for LISS training. It is a low-impact exercise that engages the lower body muscles and promotes cardiovascular endurance. Maintain a steady and moderate pace throughout your cycling session.
Stationary Cycle: Using a stationary bike specifically designed for LISS training is another effective option. Set the resistance level to a comfortable intensity that allows you to pedal consistently at a moderate pace. Focus on maintaining a steady effort without sudden bursts or changes in intensity.
Target Heart Rate for LISS Training
The heart rate for LISS (Low-Intensity Steady State) training typically falls within the moderate intensity range, which is approximately 50-70% of your maximum heart rate (MHR). It's important to note that individual heart rate zones may vary based on factors such as age, fitness level, and any underlying health conditions.
To calculate your target heart rate range for LISS training, you can use the following general formula:
Target Heart Rate Range = (MHR x 50%) to (MHR x 70%)
To estimate your maximum heart rate (MHR), you can use the simple formula: 220 minus your age. However, it's important to remember that this is just an estimate, and individual variations may occur.
For example, let's assume you're 40 years old. To determine your target heart rate range for LISS training, you would calculate it as follows:
MHR = 220 - 40 = 180 beats per minute (BPM)
Target Heart Rate Range = (180 BPM x 50%) to (180 BPM x 70%) = 90 BPM to 126 BPM
So, for a 40-year-old individual engaging in LISS training, the target heart rate range would be approximately 90 to 126 beats per minute.
LISS Uses Body Fat as a Fuel to Burn Itself
One of the key benefits of LISS (Low-Intensity Steady State) training is its reliance on body fat as a fuel source for movement and calorie burning. During LISS exercises, the body primarily utilizes stored fat as a source of energy to sustain the low-intensity activity.
The low-intensity nature of LISS training allows the body to access and break down triglycerides, which are stored in fat cells, into fatty acids. These fatty acids are then transported to the muscles to be used as fuel. As a result, LISS workouts can be effective in promoting fat burning and aiding in weight loss.
Compared to high-intensity exercises like HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training), which rely more on carbohydrates as a fuel source, LISS training provides a unique advantage in terms of fat utilization. The longer duration and sustained effort of LISS exercises allow the body to tap into fat stores and use them as an energy source.
However, it's important to note that while LISS training primarily utilizes fat as a fuel source, the actual ratio of fat to carbohydrates burned during exercise can vary depending on factors such as individual fitness levels, exercise intensity, and duration. The body still relies on a combination of fat and carbohydrates for energy during LISS training, but the proportion of fat utilization tends to be higher compared to high-intensity exercises.
Incorporating LISS training into your fitness routine can contribute to overall calorie expenditure and assist in weight management. However, it's important to maintain a balanced approach to exercise and combine LISS training with other forms of exercise, such as strength training, for a well-rounded fitness program. Additionally, adopting a healthy and balanced diet is crucial for optimizing fat burning and achieving weight loss goals.
Please feel free to contact me if you would like to start using LISS training to burn fat and lose weight sustainably. I can help you with LISS training with in-person training or live online weight loss coaching.
Interested to learn even more? You can visit my weight loss page to find more invaluable weight loss information.
About the Author:
Dennis Romatz is the Owner and Head Personal Trainer at Dennis Romatz Fitness representing the pinnacle of excellence in personal training with locations in Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Phnom Penh, Cambodia and Chicago, IL. You can contact Dennis to train with him in person or live online or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.