Tag Archives: HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

BODY & SOUL: Low Intensity - Steady State

BODY & SOUL: Low Intensity – Steady State

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BODY & SOUL: Low Intensity – Steady State

by Agnes Ramsay

Low intensity steady state (LISS) exercises are very effective for those who can’t do high intensity bouts of exercise. It’s low impact, so it’s easy on your joints and it can be done anywhere, at any time. In a previous article, I talked about HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), which has been trending the last few years. With this form of exercise, you combine periods of high intensity exercises, interspersed with low intensity breaks. While HIIT is extremely effective, it’s not for everyone.

You’re probably quite familiar with the LISS type of work out – walking at a steady cadence, light jogging or swimming. Basically, you can do any type of activity that increases your heart rate by approximately 60 to 80 per cent, for a maximum of 35 to 45 minutes.

Photo, bigstockphoto.com
Photo, bigstockphoto.com


Everyone can use LISS training. For those who are new to fitness, LISS can provide a gateway to getting stronger, and is less intimidating. Someone with no restrictions can do a HIIT training one day, then three days of LISS, and then back to HIIT.

However, if you have restrictions, such as back problems, arthritis, and/ or joint issues, stick to LISS. Your body will eventually adapt, and you won’t reap the benefits, if you do the same exercises over and over. Therefore, ensure that you vary your LISS training with different workouts.

Before you head out, do some dynamic stretching and finish off with some static stretching. For the most effective caloric burn, do it first thing in the morning before you eat. To ensure that you stay on track, schedule it into your day, ask a friend to join you, and switch up your exercises to keep it fun. If timing is an issue, break it up into 15 minute increments – two or three times per day.


  • Fast walk
  • Slow jog
  • Moderate swim
  • Bicycle riding on a flat surface
  • Elliptical/rower at a steady state


  • LISS can be done on a daily basis, as opposed to HIIT, which requires three to four days of recovery.
  • LISS takes less energy, therefore if you’re on a calorie reduced diet you won’t be starving after a workout.
  • It helps to increase your aerobic health.
  • It’s easier on the joints, which equals fewer injuries.
  • For some, LISS is more agreeable than HIIT, which helps with compliance.


With LISS, the pace is steady, but constant. You can use a heart-rate monitor to stay in the moderate range or use the talk test. If you can carry on a conversation at the pace you are exercising, then you are in the moderate range.


For example; if you are 60 years of age, your maximum heart rate is 220 minus your age (60), which equals 180.

Therefore, your LISS heart rate should be 60 to 80 per cent of that – around 108 to 144.

Don’t underestimate the power of getting outside. With LISS, you can do it anywhere, so take the time to smell the roses.

Agnes Ramsay is a Registered Nurse, Personal Trainer and Wellness Coach specializing in Electric Muscle Stimulation Training.



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Body & Soul: A Healthy Pleasure - Stay fit while travelling

Body & Soul: A Healthy Pleasure

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Body & Soul: A Healthy Pleasure

by Agnes Ramsay

Photo, (top) bigstock.com

Stay fit while travelling

Virtual Reality Technology is very realistic. I was amazed by its capabilities as it looked, and felt, like I was wandering around a beautiful vineyard in France. However, as good as the technology is, it still isn’t anywhere close to the real deal. Even when interacting with business colleagues, nothing, yet, has truly replaced real face time. And while the virtual vineyard looked lovely, I’d prefer to actually experience it, so that all my senses are stimulated.


I’m a big fan of travelling, but it can wreak havoc on your daily fitness routine. If you are traveling for pleasure, try to build your holiday around activities. For the more active, this may include hiking excursions, or simply walking around the cities that you’re visiting. Exploring different cultures is always best on foot. I’m never concerned when my clients go on this type of vacation as they don’t need to make an additional effort to exercise – it’s built into the trip by seeing the sights.

Pack your pedometer of choice and delight in all the steps that you’re taking. Make sure that you pack good walking shoes – heels are never your friend on cobblestone streets. And don’t forget the walking poles.

If you are going south for a much-needed R&R holiday, ensure that walking becomes part of your daily routine. Get up early for a brisk walk on the beach before it gets too hot. Don’t forget to take a bottle of water, and wear a hat and sunblock. Most resorts offer other activities like kayaking, beach volleyball and swimming. And many are so large that simply walking everywhere will give you a daily workout.

Personally, I tend to avoid the gyms when travelling south, because I’d prefer to be outdoors. However, if the heat is a concern, a short gym visit is a great option – you are on holidays, after all.


HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is another possibilty. Dr. Martin Gibala, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster University, has done many studies on HIIT. She’s found that short bursts of high intensity exercise, followed by periods of moderate intensity, is remarkably effective – 10 to 15 minutes is enough.

When on business, HIIT training is highly recommended. Time is often at a premium, and you may not be booked into a hotel with a gym. Nor may you be in an area that’s conducive to walking. HIIT training can be done in your room.


  • Two- to three-minute warm up (light jogging on the spot).
  • High intensity activity for 20 seconds, then stepping on the spot for 40 seconds. Repeat circuit four to eight times.
  • Two- to three-minute cool down (stepping on the spot).


  • Jumping jacks
  • Mountain climbers
  • Squat jumps
  • Running man
  • Spider man
  • Burpees
  • Reverse lunges
  • High knee raise

*Check online videos for proper form.

Agnes Ramsay is a Registered Nurse, Personal Trainer and Wellness Coach specializing in Electric Muscle Stimulation Training.



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