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Mark’s Daily Apple

Marathon Cardio:Cardiovascular Endurance Training Is Inefective For Fat Loss


I used to live right down the street from the U of M Hospital in Ann Arbor. Walking to work was a simple luxury because parking was a zoo.  In the short ten minutes of walking you could always see about a dozen people at any given time jogging or riding their bikes.  It made no difference to Ann Arbor  joggers if there was rain, snow, hail, or a tornado. They  were the majority shareholders who owned the sidewalks around the hospital.

hospital2 Marathon Cardio:Cardiovascular Endurance Training Is Inefective For Fat Loss

Our Bodies Are Not Meant For Cardiovascular Endurance Jogging?

Like I just mentioned above, I noticed people jogging all over Ann Arbor but it always made me think…is this a good use of time, commitment, and energy? Endurance training, for some people, is  therapeutic for the mind to be outside. But what about the people who think it is the best way to lose weight?  A lot of regular joggers that I see look a little run down and ragged looking.  To make my point, I have been a frequent visitor to Mark Sisson’s website Mark’s Daily Apple and he wrote a great article in regards to this topic called “Chronic Cardio” . In regards to fat loss, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is way more effective in burning fat.

What Is Marathon Cardio And How Is It Horrible For The Body

Cardiovascular endurance jogging aka “marathon cardio,” can be best described as a steady but challenging jogging pace typically with a duration exceeding 30 minutes.  It doesn’t always have to be specific with jogging, it can also be done on a bike, swimming, etc.  I have always felt uneasy watching marathon runners and was never convinced that it was good for the body to endure this kind of torture..  I thought I was the only one who felt this way until Rusty Moore and Mark Sisson wrote about the dangers of prolonged running to increase endurance.  Mark Sisson writes great articles in regards to this topic because he used to be a “marathon guy.” In 1985 he was coined one of the “fittest” men alive.  He placed 4th in the “Ironman Triathlon” in Hawaii and has also been on the cover of “Runners World” three times.  He has since dropped that lifestyle of marathons and endurance training because he does not believe in it.  (Here’s a little clip of Mark and how he stays in shape…did I mention he is in his 50’s!)


(Short burst intervals are much more effective than long and boring cardio. Sprinting workouts and swimming workouts are my favorites to implement HIIT.)

VibramFiveFingers 300x221 Marathon Cardio:Cardiovascular Endurance Training Is Inefective For Fat Loss

Vibram FiveFingers

 (Although these shoes will make you look like a Ninja, they will definitely help keep your feet free from cuts. They also are meant to retrain the way you run)

HIIT With A Little Steady State Cardio

Obviously you can see that I am a huge fan of HIIT.  You can really bust your butt in a short period of time without completely taxing the body into oblivion.  The only time I use steady state cardio  is when it is supplemented at the end of HIIT or a bodyweight workout to maximize fat burning.  This is to help you gain that extra edge with fat loss.  I also have to make sure that I throw in this little tip because people seem to take ideas to the extreme.  Don’t go too long and hard during the steady state because you can burn yourself with too much cardiovascular endurance training. Busting your tail with the intervals will provide more benefits

Save Walking For Outside Of The Gym

I am also a huge fan of walking.  Walking is very good for your body.  Some of the healthiest and most fit people walk and are active almost every day.  Yes, they do intense workouts in short periods of time, but it is only done a few times a week.  Not every day!!  Walking on a treadmill will not be an effective way of burning that body fat.  The body fat will melt off with a good diet, fasting, and your 3-4 intense workouts a week.  Once again, I am a huge fan of walking but save it for outside the gym.

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