If I Don’t Sweat, Does It Even Count?

It is a common belief that if you don’t leave a workout dripping in sweat, it didn’t count. Count for what? That is the main question. If you
didn’t sweat until your clothes need to be wrung out, does that mean it was a waste of time?  Before we talk about the physiology of sweating, let’s explore the why of exercise and what it “counts” for.

What is the goal for each workout? Do you know what you want to get out of your workouts?

There are a variety of reasons why people choose to exercise, and not all of them include sweating!

Some common exercise goals are:

  • Improve health
    • Lower resting heart rate
    • Lower blood pressure
    • Lower Cholesterol
    • Boost immunity
  • Lower risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes
  • Lose weight
  • Stress reduction
  • Improve mental health
  • Increase bone density
  • Gain strength
  • Increase lean muscle mass
  • Compete in a fitness or athletic competition
  • Increase flexibility
  • Improved sports performance
  • Social connection
  • Sweat it out!

Moderate exercise is very effective at improving health markers and reducing risk of chronic diseases.

Walking, for instance, may or may not cause you to break out in a sweat, but it is a very important way to increase bone density, boost immunity, create social connections, reduce stress, boost mood, and extend your life. That counts for a lot! Those are some pretty key quality of life measures.

Not everyone enjoys sweating. Shocking, I know! So, if you belong to the sweat free crew, keep it up! You are making significant impacts to your health.

Why do we sweat?

Heat is a product of metabolism. At rest, heat production is small. During intense exercise, heat production is large. The body is only 20-30% efficient which means 70-80% of the energy expended during exercise appears as heat. As body temperature rises during exercise, heat loss mechanisms cool the body. Evaporation, or sweating, is one of these important cooling mechanisms.

Evaporative cooling during exercise occurs when body temperature rises above normal. The nervous system stimulates the sweat glands to secrete sweat onto the surface of the skin. As sweat evaporates, heat is lost to the environment and the body temperature cools.

Evaporation of sweat depends on three things: 1) the ambient temperature and relative humidity, 2) the convective currents around the body (think wind or fans), and 3) the amount of skin surface exposed to the environment. High relative humidity reduces the rate of evaporation thus, more sweat stays on the surface of the skin rather than evaporating into the air. You are usually drenched in sweat in high humidity. The body struggles to cool itself because the heat is not being transferred from the body to the air which stimulates further sweat loss. This is basically useless sweat loss because it is not cooling the skin. In situations like an indoor cycle class, for instance, where the humidity is high and possibly the fans are turned off, sweat rate can be very high. This does not necessarily indicate that one worked harder. It is an indication of the decreased evaporation of sweat and decreased effectiveness of cooling the body.

Let’s look at some other factors that affect sweat rates. Heat-accustomed individuals have an earlier onset of sweating and a higher sweat rate during exercise. Individuals with a larger body mass have higher sweat rates compared to smaller individuals. As more of the body is covered by clothing or football pads, for instance, less evaporation occurs increasing sweat rate. Lastly, individuals with a higher fitness level have an earlier onset of sweating and a higher sweat rate during exercise.

As you can see, the amount you sweat is not a great indicator of how hard you worked. The more important factors to look at are the level of effort, your power output if it can be measured, your heart rate, or your calorie output. These are much better indicators of how hard you worked.

Sweat is simply a mechanism to cool the body. Yes, as intensity of exercise increases, more heat is produced and more heat needs to be lost. However, in a cooler environment or with a fan at your face, more sweat can evaporate or convective currents transfer heat and you will find you sweat less. That doesn’t mean you weren’t going beast mode all the way!

The next time you want to know if a workout “counts,” evaluate how well the workout met your specific goals. Did you take the actions required to hit your goals? If the answer is yes, then IT COUNTS whether you sweat or not!

Heather Flebbe, M.S.

7 Day Reset

We’ve incorporated inspiration and motivation to help you rock all 7 days. In the next 7 days you will make shifts in your mind and body that will boost your metabolism, improve sleep and increase energy.


This is a self paced reset, so you can start when you are ready but we recommend to continue with the reset each day once you begin to see the maximum results.

All it takes is 7 DAYS. What are you waiting for?

Kaia Tri is a ten-week triathlon training program with workouts three times a week, which is an optional extra during our spring and summer CORE sessions. We swim, bike, and run, with some cross-training classes too. By being able to set a personal pace, our triathlon training program is suited to beginners tackling their first race and intermediate athletes looking to improve their finish time.

Our mock triathlons run several times to familiarize women with the course route. We finish the season with a Triathlon Training Camp which includes paddle boarding and power workouts. The next day is our exhilarating and fun Triathlon race day for all Kaia Tri women to enjoy working out in a beautiful location. Friends are welcome too!


Kaia Sandbag combines traditional fitness with unconventional training methods. With sandbags, the weight shifts and moves in an unpredictable fashion. This piece of equipment is integrated into our conditioning & strength building workouts to simultaneously develop strength, power, endurance, mobility, and balance – with an additional emphasis on developing overall core strength and stability.

New to sandbag training? No problem! Beginners are always welcome.


TRX® Suspension Training® body-weight exercise simultaneously develops strength, power, endurance, mobility, durability, balance, flexibility, and core stability. Whether you’re younger or older, out of shape or a pro athlete, injured or at the top of your game, TRX Suspension Training meets you where you are and takes you where you want to go. TRX Suspension Training leverages gravity and the user’s body weight to enable hundreds of exercises that can be instantly scaled for any user to reach any fitness or training goal. The easily-scalable nature of TRX Suspension Training makes it a practical solution wherever you are on the fitness continuum.

Need a little extra boost to keep your body guessing? Our TRX/Cardio class is an excellent complement to any Kaia FIT session. TRX workouts, which can be used by anyone at any level, builds true functional strength and improves flexibility, balance and core stability all at once. Mixed with cardio, the classes give every member the perfect balance of challenge and success.

*TRX classes not available in all areas. Please contact us your local studio.


Our trademark Kaia Cross-Training™ classes are a unique mix of cardio, functional movement, and both weighted and non-weighted exercises.

Cross-Training benefits:

Each day brings a new workout. We have an elite group of advanced coaches who infuse each workout with their own flair and focus, meaning you’re never going to repeat a workout, avoid burn-out, and fitness plateaus.

Keeping the body guessing is key to sculpting lean muscle mass. We also have a 3-part modification foundation: Balance (non-impact); Strength (mid-impact) and Kaia (high impact). Each exercise has its own progression so that everyone can feel successful.

As a part of our program, we also offer nutritional guidance to help you make healthy food choices and keep your fitness on track.

What are you waiting for? Join us today!


Our barre-based class is a unique combination of postures inspired by ballet, yoga, Pilates and Kaia. Using the barre as a prop to balance, you’ll complete a series of isometric holds combined with high reps of small range movements to elongate and tone your major muscle groups.

In addition to the barre, classes incorporate pilates balls, yoga blocks, and/or resistance bands for increased endurance, challenge and focus. Following each set of holds, you’ll rest and recovery with a short series of stretches and poses to increase flexibility prior to advancing.
Kaia Barre is a low-impact class that perfectly complements our program offerings. Meet us at the barre and try your first class for free!

Participating locations may vary. See the schedule page for more details.


Our dance fitness class is rooted in traditional dance. We use those foundational moves and offer a class that is easy enough for beginners yet challenging enough for the more seasoned dancer. The simplicity of the routines allows you to keep moving with ease. Although this is a workout, it feels more like a dance party with your girlfriends.


Improve your speed, skill, endurance, stamina, and strength with our Kaia running program. The program works on developing running skills that can increase speed, endurance, and overall fitness. The program is designed for you to run at your pace and and help you see improvements every step of the way.

The Kaia training is a simple, progressive program designed for women of all ages and all fitness levels. Whether you are a walker, jogger, or runner, you will be able to join this program and move at your own pace. Research has shown that even 20 to 30 minutes of running (two to three times per week) is enough to help you lose or maintain weight and improve many other important health markers, i.e. your cholesterol, blood pressure and insulin response.

Don’t be intimidated by the Kaia Run program name, each class will have walkers, joggers and runners. Keep in mind that the first mile is the hardest mile you will ever run. Once you get off the starting block, things only get easier. All you have to do is be patient and disciplined in your training, and that is where Kaia


Kaia Yoga combines mind and body with a power yoga and core-strengthening weekly workout with Pilates-style techniques. We focus on balance, strength, and cardiovascular fitness through stretching, strength training and dynamic movement to improve overall fitness levels.

By creating long, lean muscles, Yoga promotes improved coordination, greater flexibility and a fuller range of motion, with a strong body that’s less prone to injury. Yoga keeps the mind centered and reduces stress through positive thoughts and a sense of mindfulness, which also inspires mental strength and confidence.

Yin Yoga, or restorative yoga, is a quiet contemplative practice. It targets the deepest tissues of the body, our connective tissues – ligaments, joints, bones, and the deep fascia networks of the body. Poses are held for 1 minute or more and transitions between poses are gentle and slow. This class is an excellent compliment to our other classes, provides dedicated stretching, and is known to reduce stress and anxiety.


Our BRIK Bootcamp sessions are offered three times a year and are designed to help you reach your health and fitness potential, and you’re welcome to start anytime!

Our BRIK Bootcamps are six weeks long and feature classes daily.* This programming fits in seamlessly with our regularly scheduled classes, and it’s as easy as 1-2-3:

  1. Register for BRIK Bootcamp HERE (included for Platinum & Gold Memberships)
  2. Book your classes through our branded app and Show Up
  3. Let our expert coaches do the rest!

These sessions offer great results in weight and body fat loss and an increase in strength and cardiovascular endurance. Our nutritional support will boost energy, help you de-bloat, increase sleep quality, and enhance your overall glow.

BRIK Bootcamp includes:

In between BRIK Bootcamp, we offer a variety of classes to meet you at your level! We also have nutrition and fitness challenges, in addition to fun opportunities to spice up your routine. What are you waiting for? Join us today!


Cardio based, calorie torching workout with certified spin instructors. It’s a party on a bike!

Try a Week Free