Essentials – HIIT Training VS Strength Training

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Workout Essentials – HIIT Training VS Strength Training

I often find there is a little bit of confusion between these two different types of training methods, HIIT Training and Strength Training, and the benefits they bring the body.

In this post, I’ll take a deep dive into the two, using the input of my coaches and clients to help see you through what ever your friend/neighbour or bullshit media sources say and make the best choice to suit your needs and goals.

Let’s start with what they both are:

HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) for sure is a buzzword that is thrown around in media and in gyms a lot these days. It also exists in many forms: Tabata, metcon, AMRAP just to mention a few. Exercises used in HIIT training generally contains a combination of muscles groups working together in various ranges of motion with the goal being the more of your muscular system that you challenge in one movement or during a series of movements to complete a single repetitive cycle, the more challenged your body is as a whole.

Lots of gyms claim that all you need is 20 – 30 mins of HIIT 3-4 times per week. The results? Well, the method works and with that volume of training you can see improvements through speeding up your metabolism, shredding fat, improvement in your strength, and in addition, great benefits for your heart and lungs.

The Other method? Traditional Strength AKA Strength Training

Having been around for centuries, the traditional practice of lifting heavy loads through a single movement helps to pack on muscle, burn fat and is great for boosting the metabolism.

The positives? For men: Strength training boosts your testosterone levels, and for women: it regulates hormone and thyroid levels plus it has some great benefits for bone density and lowering blood pressure.

After conducting research with clients, the feedback I received was mainly kinesthetic; lots of information about how the training makes them FEEL.

For HIIT training, “I sweat a lot.” “I feel like I’m burning fat.” “My weight goes down” “My fat is crying.”

After Strength training, “I feel I get a good pump on.” “I feel strong,” “My chest and biceps look bigger.”

The consensus we get from the coaches is of course always very professional, lots of science and theories about how energy is used, muscles are contracted, periodisation and specificity of workload vs the participant involved.

Interestingly enough, the point of view that stood out the most, is that you need a “foundational” level of strength FIRST before you take on dynamic movements involved during most HIIT training workouts.

This is due to the fact that strength training will promote a total body, healthy integration, as well as strengthening your joints through a larger range of motion while reducing injury and insuring that you are using the correct muscles in the right way.

This collaborative type of exercise makes sure that you WILL get the maximum benefits from your HIIT training.

So, what about how you’ll LOOK?? HIIT vs Strength Training

Well, aesthetically HIIT training will shred your body of fat while weight training will help alter your body shape and body composition

There is a really cool link between the clients and coaches views here, which helps us with our summary.

Construct the body of your dreams by ensuring FIRST that you have a foundation of strength and stability in place.

Only then, should you start to implement the tools and benefits of HIIT training to give your body that look and feel you have always wished for!


All the best and hope to see you in the Playground soon!

– Richard Cohen CEO & founder – The LAB

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