Pairing Cardio and Weight Training for Maximum Fat Loss

You may view cardio and weights as two distinct types of exercise, but when you combine them, you have a powerful combination for fat loss success. One of the perennial questions about exercise for weight loss (fat loss) is whether you should focus on aerobic exercise (cardio) or weight training and resistance exercise. Let's figure this out right away - you need to do both simultaneously to get the best result.

Every now and then, scientific studies emerge that show a certain level of fat loss with aerobic exercise versus weights, and most of the time, aerobic exercise outperforms weights by any reasonable comparison. There is no secret to this, because continuous movement at a reasonably demanding intensity and volume will always outperform intermittent exercise (such as weight lifting), even at high intensity, and even taking into account the subsequent burn. Still, you need to do both. This is why.

Weight advantages

Strength and resistance training builds muscles. Muscle has a higher metabolic rate than fat, so having more muscle slightly increases your resting metabolic rate (energy expenditure) compared to having more body fat.

However, the differences are not dramatic. Even at the high end of predictions (which are disputed), it's less than a few dozen calories a day for every pound of muscle you add. It helps, but it doesn't change lives.

Still, in a weight loss program, weight training is important to help maintain your muscles. When you lose weight, it tends to be a combination of fat and muscle. Ideally, you want to lose fat, but hold onto muscle. Weight training helps you achieve this and has many other health and performance benefits in addition to building additional muscle.

If the extra muscle doesn't provide much of an energy expenditure advantage, what about exhaustion, long touted as an advantage of weight training? Afterburner is the amount of energy you use after you stop exercising. This is another way of saying that your metabolism increases for several hours or more after a workout.

Exercise scientists call this afterburner effect "excessive oxygen consumption after exercise" or COPD. A burn occurs when you exercise at higher intensities, above 75% of your maximum heart rate, either with weights or cardio. However, you must be able to maintain that intensity, which means a lot of hard work.

Advantages of cardio

The main advantage of aerobic exercise at moderate intensities is that you can do it continuously for much longer than intermittent weightlifting exercise. It is this uninterrupted movement that gives cardio an inherent advantage in energy expenditure during an exercise session.

You can mix weights and movement in circuit training sessions to provide that extra boost, but movement is key. If you move fast enough to run or pedal at about 80% of your maximum heart rate, you will also suffer a subsequent burn. This is why most comparisons show that cardiovascular exercise is superior to traditional weight training when it comes to energy expenditure.

Tips for the Best Fat Loss Program

Use these five guidelines to develop your exercise and exercise program for weight loss and fat loss.

  • Build muscle with weight training. The extra muscle helps you burn more energy at rest, even if it's just a little bit.
  • Lift heavier weights. Weight training should be vigorous, with the number of repetitions maintained at the lower end of the scale between 8 and 12 repetitions. Low reps and high weights increase muscle strength, and high reps with low weights increase endurance. Both are valuable. Look for a weight / rep combination that gives you enough intensity for a vigorous workout with minimal breaks.
  • Combine resistance training with continuous movement in a circuit training program or a similar anaerobic training program in which you train on progressive workstations at a moderately high intensity.
  • Get regular aerobic exercise of your choice, with brisk jogging, brisk cycling, and swimming instead of walking to burn the most calories in the least amount of time. Considering how much energy you would use in an hour of cardio or static weights, you need to do consistent aerobic or cardiovascular work to burn fat. Try alternating days with weights and cardio for six days a week, making sure to rest on the seventh.

High intensity interval training

Get high-intensity aerobic exercise for shorter periods or try high-intensity interval training. High intensity exercise, even if only in short bursts, can speed up metabolism and mobilize fat in the post-exercise period. A group exercise program, such as a spinning bike class, can meet this requirement. Don't overdo it though, because burning fat is a long-term project and you don't want to burn yourself out.

Cardio and Strength Workouts

Standard advice is to do aerobic and strength exercises in separate sessions or on alternate days. A sample program would include aerobics on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, strength training on Tuesdays and Fridays, and use Thursdays for yoga, stretching, or recovery.

Or you can do your cardio in the morning and strength training later in the day. If you are focusing on building strength, this allows you to work your upper body one day and then your lower body most days of the week.

But if you have trouble exercising every day, one option is to combine aerobic and strength exercises in one session. There have been studies and debates about doing cardio first, followed by strength training, or vice versa.

There is no conclusive evidence of an advantage of one sequence over another, whether your goal is aerobic fitness, fat loss, muscle hypertrophy, or lower body strength. It may be best not to overthink and do it in whatever order you want.

If you're most interested in running or being in general shape, doing aerobic exercise first, when your legs are fresh, will allow you to get the most out of it and burn calories and fat. If you refill well with fluids, you can still do a heavyweight session after your aerobics session.

Enjoy Watching This Video About Strength

Source: Fit Father Project - Fitness For Busy Fathers

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