When we strive to look better, lose weight, tone muscles, gain more strength, we go for different programs, regimes and diet, some of them of them more successful than others. Unfortunately, there are various misconceptions concerning any and every form of exercise and it’s important to work on clearing them.
Whenever you say to someone you need to lose weight, the first advice you’re likely to hear is to do as much cardio as you can. If you want to bulk up and build more muscle, then look no further than strength training aka weightlifting and its variations. Still, your body never works on just one level, balance is essential.
Cardio vs Strength Training in Weight Loss
So let’s uncover the pros and cons of cardio vs strength training. What you gain and lose by going for one of the two exercise plans and why it might be a good idea to combine them for optimal results.
Women always opt in for cardio when they’re trying to lose weight, and for all the good reasons. Whether it’s running, swimming or cycling, on average you lose up to 12 calories a minute when doing cardio, which can pile up quite quickly when you’re doing it for a long time. The key here is to go for longer workouts that will enable you to ease into your cardio practice and still melt away that stubborn fat.
The downside of these long sessions is that we don’t necessarily have time do to 90 minutes of cardio every other day, plus to some it can really get dull after a while. This is where you can spice it up with some weightlifting sessions. Not to mention that it has been proving that time after time, long periods of cardio have little to no effect on weight loss. It’s better to opt for HIIT sessions that are shorter and far more effective.
Weight training isn’t appealing to many women, simply because there are delusions that weightlifting will make you bulky and unwomanly. We’re here to burst your bubble and tell you that strength training is the best and most efficient way to sculpt your body. Don’t worry, you won’t get all huge and pumped because you’re lacking the testosterone to make it happen. Plus, you would need to eat a lot more, which is unlikely to happen.
If you’re striving to maintain a healthy lifestyle, then you will do everything in moderation, even when you’re indulging yourself or ordering takeout, which can be just as nourishing. You can always look up healthy food delivery to make sure you’re on the right track food-wise.
Losing More in The Long Run, no Pun Intended
While you might be losing fewer calories during weight training, your metabolism stays pumped up and burns more calories up to 36 hours after your workout is done. This means that, after you’re done with your strength training, just sitting will require more energy thus burning the calories into oblivion.
If you’re trying to get the most of your workouts, we suggest not thinking about who wins in cardio vs strength training, but rather how you can incorporate these two regimes to work together for optimal results.
Boosting Your Metabolism
Having a higher metabolism doesn’t only allow you to look good, it’s also essential as you get older and processes in your body slow down. Cardio excels at this. It does wonders for your metabolism. It helps you feel good in your own skin and it’s extremely beneficial in reducing the risks of numerous heart diseases, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis just to name a few.
If you go for high intensity cardio workouts regularly, you can look forward to elevating your metabolism for up to two days after your exercise. This means that everything works faster and better which results in losing weight permanently and feeling amazing.
Muscles to Burn Calories
And where does strength training fit in this picture? Weightlifting is there to build lean muscle mass. The more muscle you’ve got in your body, the more energy you will need to make it all work, aka more calories are being constantly burnt.
As you work on improving your muscle mass through strength workouts, your body will get accustomed to using up more calories, allowing you to reshape your body and be in good fitness shape. This is the main reason why strength workouts are so good for losing all those extra pounds without the yo-yo effect. You’re rewiring your body to work more efficiently over time.
The Gist of it
If you’re asking us, cardio vs strength training work best when paired together. Depending on your specific needs and goals, you can tailor a workout regime that will work best for you, but don’t completely focus on one regime to neglect the other. Both sides bear significant benefits and it is up to you to weigh those benefits out and have them work to your advantage. Let us know what your strategy is when you’re working out and give us your pros and cons for cardio vs strength training.
About the author
Theresa Brawner is a 28-year-old fitness instructor from Boston, MA, who writes articles for www.diet.st in her free time. When she isn’t helping new moms get back in shape, you can find her in the kitchen, working on new recipes.
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This is Grace
Grace from Color & Grace. Based in Troy, Michigan, Grace is a 42 year-old petite woman who loves colours. Born and raised in China, she moved to America for love in 2007. Her day job – teacher. Her dream job – fashion blogger. Make sure to go and check out her blog and leave her a comment on her awesome outfit.
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