High-Intensity Interval Training Wins Again

About the Author: Eric Cressey

Here’s a random question for you: have you ever seen a fat soccer player competing at a high level?

Nope. It just doesn’t happen; you can’t get far in this sport if you’re carrying excess baggage – and the demands of the sport get you lean in the first place.

Now, here’s a follow-up question: have you ever seen a fat jogger?

Absolutely! They’re all over the place; heck, there are probably more fat joggers than there are lean joggers!

A recent study takes things a step further and shows that soccer is not only superior to jogging for fat loss (almost double the fat loss over the course of 12 weeks), but that it’s also superior for fitness gains and muscle mass increases – all while exercising at a lower perceived exertion because they were having more fun.

Take-home lessons?

1. As Alwyn Cosgrove and Craig Ballantyne (and dozens of other bright fitness professionals) have stated over and over, high-intensity work (interval training and lifting) blow aerobic exercise out of the water for fat loss.

2. Pick an activity that is fun for you. Play ultimate Frisbee, flag football, or just go sprint (racing someone is great). Long, slow, steady-state cardio is about as exciting as watching paint dry.

3. Build muscle mass and you’ll get leaner faster.

Eric Cressey