One of the biggest misconceptions out there related to working out is that high-intensity workouts are always better. This may not always be the case because low-intensity workouts tend to specifically burn fat while high-intensity workouts burn fat at first but then start using up carbohydrates instead after a while (we have all heard of carb loading before a big workout).

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Grace Ling

It's true, however, that with high-intensity workouts you still end up burning more fat overall – even if a lower ratio of calories is coming from fat. This is because even with the lower ratio of calories from fat, the workout is more intense so more overall calories get burned – and as a result more fat.

Having said this, low-intensity workouts still have plenty of benefits, especially if you're new to working out.

Low-Intensity Workouts Can be Maintained Longer

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Jocelyn Gordon

High-intensity workouts can be hard to keep up for longer periods of time making it less likely for a beginner to be able to get to the point where they would burn more fat than they would have with a low-intensity workout.

If you're a novice when it comes to working out, it may be more feasible to complete a low-intensity workout instead because a higher ratio of calories burned comes from the fat so you will end up burning more fat by working out for longer.

Lower Risk of Injury

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Lexi Nickens

Another advantage of low-intensity workouts is that they are less likely to cause an injury since you end up putting less strain on your joints or muscles. In many cases those who aren't very experienced end up hurting themselves when trying to complete high-intensity workouts. Keeping the intensity low helps ensure that you are staying safe throughout the entire workout.

The Workout is More Enjoyable

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Morgan Cleary

The more intense the workout is, the less enjoyable it tends to be, as a general rule. There are always exceptions to this, but for the most part going for a leisurely bike ride always beats out wall-sits and burpees. When we like working out we are more likely to actually do it which is beneficial for fat burning goals.


Someone who is a pro at HIIT workouts and knows what they are are doing should be able to keep up the high-intensity with no issues and burn more fat, but for those of us just starting out, a low-intensity workout is a great option. Once you are able to get more comfortable with your workouts, increasing the intensity can be a good idea.

Some examples of great low-intensity workouts include yoga, a light jog or going for a slow bike ride. Just keep in mind that you would need to work out for at least one hour to get the same benefits as you would have with a higher intensity workout.