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Cardio or Strength first?



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CORTNEY-LEE
SparkPoints: (50,684)
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Posts: 3,015
2/28/13 11:48 P

I do 10 mins of cardio warm up
30 mins of strength
20 mins of intervals

I do this 3 days a week. On my off days, I plan on getting into a class and starting C25K, but haven't got around to it because of crappy weather





GZELLEFRO
SparkPoints: (40,824)
Fitness Minutes: (28,280)
Posts: 2,209
2/28/13 9:21 P

I alternate days. I do cardio every other day and strength training on opposing days. I do yoga every day after each one. The reason I do it after cardio or strength training, is my muscles are already warmed up and I find I can stretch better.

Some days I do both, if I feel really strong, but I don't want to get burned out, so I usually do only one or the other with yoga following.

Pace yourself. If you want to change for good, don't overdo it.



VATRUCKER
SparkPoints: (20,629)
Fitness Minutes: (36,922)
Posts: 526
2/28/13 7:56 P

I do my cardio first because its the most important segment of my routine. I strenght train as a second option 3,4 days a week after cardio emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon



TRACYCD
SparkPoints: (5,959)
Fitness Minutes: (4,315)
Posts: 158
2/28/13 7:53 P

Thank you, Seargentmajor! I'm going to take your advice..



SERGEANTMAJOR
Posts: 6,403
2/28/13 7:42 P


Tracy,

Adding more cardio will do nothing but add more time to your workouts to no avail. The formula for fat loss , note I said fat loss and not weight loss, is nutrition (diet) the primary results producer. In second place is strength training, bringing up the rear contrary to popular myth is cardio. A scale measures nothing but the force of gravity at a given time and that can vary throughout the day. Use measurements to track your progress and lose the scale.

Control you nutrition, you caloric intake, do a dedicated strength training programme instead of an add on strength programme three times a week on alternate days and then do some form of interval cardio on the non strength training days. While these flies in the face of "(un)conventional wisdom" it is a tried and true approach which has stood the test of time.



TRACYCD
SparkPoints: (5,959)
Fitness Minutes: (4,315)
Posts: 158
2/28/13 7:15 P

I don't have a trainer, so I like to read what you are explaining. I want to lose weight, but I'm struggling. I've been doing cardio mostly every other day and adding in weights afterwards over the last couple of weeks. Perhaps that's why I'm up 2 pounds? Maybe I should switch it up and do more cardio?

Edited by: TRACYCD at: 2/28/2013 (19:17)


MARSHYMELLOW
SparkPoints: (2,840)
Fitness Minutes: (3,229)
Posts: 21
2/28/13 7:05 P

I do both strength first and then cardio.



EENERSLLIM
SparkPoints: (23,771)
Fitness Minutes: (21,508)
Posts: 308
2/28/13 5:28 P

Cardio first, unless I am circuit training.



DANISARANAC1
Posts: 261
2/28/13 5:02 P

I just circuit train, that way I get them together.



IRISHFANUH87
Posts: 1,038
2/28/13 4:16 P

There has been a lot of discussion about this lately and from what I gather, the best thing is to do cardio and strength on separate days. If you can't do that, then either way isn't going to make that much of a difference. Either way, whatever you do first will get more of your energy so you have to decide which is more important for your goals.



SERGEANTMAJOR
Posts: 6,403
2/28/13 3:27 P


If your goal is fat loss and fitness there is no need to do both in the same workout. In the formula for fat loss nutrition is the Queen, strength training is a bishop and cardio a knight or a rook. If you do your strength training certain ways you can make cardio a pawn.

My clients do strength and cardio in the ration of 3 to 2, three alternate days of strength training separated by interval cardio days. Five days a week of workout no more than 30 minutes in duration are adequate to reach goals if the intensity of the workouts is great enough.Quality is more productivity than quantity, intensity trumps duration, more is just more not better.



BOB240
SparkPoints: (5,869)
Fitness Minutes: (1,285)
Posts: 350
2/28/13 3:26 P

I am surprised about this. The established wisdom is to do weights first to maximise effect.Check out any body building forum. I.m not sure why sp has reversed the order.


Having said that I have always done cardio first but I the reasons I do it are complex and don't apply to everyone.

In truth, at the level you're likely to be at.. it really doesn't matter.. do what ever you are comfortable with and can maintain..






SWEETMAHA
SparkPoints: (65,785)
Fitness Minutes: (41,394)
Posts: 2,632
2/28/13 2:55 P

there is an article about this in SP fitness page ,maily says cardio first check it out



LETAYLOR5413
SparkPoints: (18,669)
Fitness Minutes: (30,192)
Posts: 101
2/28/13 12:30 P

Thanks! I'm never sure how much is too much, but the tracker tool is helping immensely. Thank you for all the great advice!



JCWIAKALA
Posts: 347
2/28/13 11:59 A

Letaylor, I don't think that your muscle will be affected either way you do the order of your workouts. For some, it's easier to do cardio first, for others the opposite. Do what's best for you.

Have you been tracking your calories? It sounds like you're doing a TON of exercise and perhaps you're not getting any smaller because you're not eating enough to compensate for how much exercise you're doing. I know it's a chore, but I would suggest tracking your calories and paying attention to nutrition in order to see the results you're looking for.



JCWIAKALA
Posts: 347
2/28/13 11:55 A

I completely disagree with the statement that if you want just weight loss, just do cardio. Muscle burns more calories at rest than fat does. Plus, it's more dense (1lb of muscle = 1 lb of fat, however it takes up less space). So if you build muscle through strength training, this is only going to aid your weight loss goals. Plus, you'll feel stronger. And even when the scale isn't moving, you can still be watching your measurements and seeing them go down.



LETAYLOR5413
SparkPoints: (18,669)
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2/28/13 11:54 A

I guess I should clarify - I'm already pretty good about doing both strength and cardio. I actually think I've been doing too much cardio, so I'm cutting back. For the past 6 months, I've been doing about an hour of cardio a day, 6 or 7 days a week, and strength training about 20 minutes a day, 4 days a week. The scale hasn't really been moving even though I try to eat mindfully, and honestly, I'm just starting to feel tired, so I want to change my routine and scale down.

So keep in mind that I still plan on exercising a minimum of 5 days a week, for about an hour a day. I'd like to do three strength sessions of about 20-30 minutes, and then cardio. On my off days, I plan on doing yoga or just lightly active outdoors activities (going on walks with my fiancee, gentle bike rides, etc.)

My question is this. If I do my strength training first, will I build more lean muscle than if I did cardio first? I don't really care about weight loss, I just want to lose inches.



AMYLT29
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Fitness Minutes: (1,099)
Posts: 63
2/28/13 11:30 A

I fear saggy skin by far. I'm 27, I do not have time for saggy skin. So I do BOTH. I do 20 minutes of cardio a day then I do some weight machines, alternating machines every day - abdominal is daily though (I want an 8 pack, I'm in FL, it'll look great in that bikini I'm wearing at the end of summer). I do legs one day, chest and arms the next and go back and forth. I've been losing weight and getting toned, which is perfect for me - I also like feeling the muscle start to form a little better.

Determine what is more important to you: weight loss or strength? Weight loss or toned? Format your workout to fit YOU. If you want weight loss and toned, mix your workout up like I did, if you want strictly weight loss, do just cardio, if you want just strength, do just weights.



GENEVIE5
Posts: 3,176
2/28/13 11:27 A

the "rule" is usually cardio first but not to the point of exhaustion on your strength training days.



JCWIAKALA
Posts: 347
2/28/13 11:26 A

You want your exercise routine to incorporate both strength and cardio. Strength training will help you build lean muscle (women don't bulk up like me do) and muscle will burn more calories while you're at rest, so your metabolism will increase. Cardio will help you burn more calories in a short period of time.

Keep in mind that the average healthy adult is supposed to do cardio exercise for 20-30 minutes three times a week. Always. For the rest of your life (that's a eureka thought for me). So at minimum you should be doing that, but anything extra will help you with your goals. Strength training is not as time intensive. If you do 3-4 exercises per muscle group (legs, core, arms), you can do that for about 20 minutes twice a week. The order is not important; do what is comfortable for you.

Exercise aside, nothing is as helpful to your weight loss goals as a good, healthy diet.




ILOVETORUN
Posts: 980
2/28/13 10:56 A

From what I had read if you are wanting to build muscle you want to do weights first if your looking to lose weight do cardio first. For myself I find if I do strength and cardio on the same days I like to do stength first cause the cardio usually wipes out my energy and I don't lift as heavy like I wanted to. You could also do Circuit,this way you are getting your cardio and strength in at the same time. Mix it up!

Edited by: ILOVETORUN at: 2/28/2013 (10:57)


LETAYLOR5413
SparkPoints: (18,669)
Fitness Minutes: (30,192)
Posts: 101
2/28/13 9:50 A

I know that there are benefits each way, but I'm not sure what they are. Which is a better program for fat loss, putting cardio or strength training first? I have been doing cardio both before and after, but I feel like I'm overdoing it. I'd like to cut back a little bit, but I want to get the most bang for my buck.



 
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