Should You Do Cardio Before Or After Workout To Lose Weight

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Should You Do Cardio Before Or After Workout To Lose Weight

Which Comes First, Weight Training Or Cardio 

Weight training and cardio are unquestionably the cornerstones of almost all workout regimens. Whether you are a beginner or an expert in performing various exercises in the gym, you probably have a preference for whether you prefer to start with the cardio machines or the weight room. Most people would argue that the order of preference is heavily influenced by your mood or your overall fitness goals. 

However, many articles on the internet suggest that you should start with cardio to allow those endorphins to kick in so that your body is ready for weight training. Is there, however, a real difference between doing one over and doing one over again?

Your preference on whether to do weight training or cardio first, like all other debatable and contentious topics in wellness and fitness, comes down to goals. Most, if not all, gymgoers alternate between cardio and weight training, and the order in which you perform the exercises can have a significant impact on your results. 

Scientific studies and sports research have yet to determine whether one is superior to the other in terms of doing first. However, according to the results, your goals are the determining factor in determining which one you should do first, so it all depends on whether you want to lose weight, gain muscle, or improve your overall health.

As a result, it can be extremely beneficial to first assess your goals and then decide which order is best for you.Continue reading this article to learn why you might want to do cardio or weights first, and how to tell which is best for your goals.


Select your goals

When deciding whether to do cardio or weights first during your workouts, it is always a good idea to start with your goals. So you must decide whether you want to lose weight or gain muscle tone, or whether you want to improve your endurance or build larger muscles. As a result, your goals will play an important role in determining which option to select first. It's also worth noting a common misconception: cardio is the most important exercise for losing weight. It should be noted, however, that both cardio and strength training are necessary for this.


Starting with cardio

One of the most well-known advantages of doing cardio is that it has been shown to be effective at burning calories and excess fat. According to studies, weight training for 30 minutes versus any other cardio activity for the same amount of time burns significantly more calories. Resistance exercises and anaerobic workouts are both important for fat loss. It is important to note that increasing your muscle mass increases your metabolic rate, which aids you in burning fat faster.

According to research, combining strength and cardio training reduces body fat significantly more than either method alone. Furthermore, research findings revealed that when you use a combination of the two techniques or just aerobic activity, your fat mass and waist circumference decrease. In other words, lifting alone does not result in weight loss.

With that in mind, if your goal is to lose fat or weight, you may want to begin your workouts with cardio at a steady intensity to get into the heart rate zone required for fat burning. Once you've established a steady heart rate, you can move on to weight lifting, which, according to experts, may cause afterburn, which aids in burning more calories after you've finished exercising. So, if you want to lose weight, you should increase your cardio, even if it means skipping some weights when you are short on time. A simple rule to remember is that strength training changes your shape and cardio changes your size.

It is also important to note that you do not have to work your body very hard in order to reap the benefits of a cardio workout. Experts say that even at a low intensity, cardiovascular exercise can help you lose weight because it can keep you in the fat burning zone/aerobic training zone. However, keep in mind that cardio exercises must be performed for longer periods of time in order to fully maximize their calorie-burning effects.

So, if your goal is to lose weight but you decide to lift weights first, especially if you start lifting heavy with your entire body, your body will become very tired, making it difficult for you to proceed to the cardio portion of your workout. This means you may cut your workout short and thus miss out on the calorie-burning benefits of cardio exercise.

This becomes a problem if you want to burn as many calories as possible in a given amount of time. That being said, you should experiment with both cardio and weight lifting to determine what works best for you. If you don't want to start with cardio but still want to lose fat, try doing exercises with light weights first. This can help raise your heart rate and prepare your body for running, biking, or other cardio activities.

Finally, if you are an aspiring athlete or someone who likes to run, bike, or swim and want to improve your speed or overall endurance, choosing cardio first makes sense because you are going into those workouts fresh, with your body still capable of performing at its peak. This way, you'll start with the most important exercise for your long-term goals and make faster progress. Even if you want to be a better runner or biker, it is still logical to weight train if you want to improve your cardio capacity. Resistance exercises, in fact, have been shown in studies to improve endurance athletes' performance, muscle power, and economy.

However, you may simply require longer and more frequent cardio moves, with some of those being stand-alone aerobic sessions and cross-training days interspersed throughout your week's schedule.


Starting with weights

Lifting weights first is a good choice if your primary goal in going to the gym is to improve your strength, be able to lift heavy things, or build more muscle. It is only logical not to tire out or exhaust all of your body's energy by doing cardio first. The less tired you are, the more repetitions you will be able to perform with proper form, which is essential for performing strength and weight training exercises safely and effectively.

Furthermore, as previously stated, performing weight training first may be beneficial for fat loss when combined with cardio exercises. In theory, doing weights first activates the aerobic mode of the body, so by the time you get to cardio exercises like running, you will already be in an aerobic/fat burning state. As a result, you can run in an aerobic state for longer periods of time, allowing you to use fat as an energy source. However, as previously stated, this is best when lifting lighter weights that do not exhaust your entire body.

Furthermore, studies have revealed that people did fewer weight lifting reps after completing cardio exercises such as running or cycling. Furthermore, researchers discovered that performing weight training without prior cardio resulted in more reps. A recent study looked at subjects who ran on the treadmill for different lengths of time. The number of reps they did during strength and weight training decreased, as did muscle power. The subjects' heart rate and rate of perceived exertion increased during the strength training sessions that followed aerobic exercise, particularly after an HIIT running workout. This validates the previous study's findings.

Experts have discovered that most people who exercise in the gym feel stronger after they begin with weight training. In fact, several scientific studies show that aerobic training, when performed prior to lifting, can have a negative impact on strength development. This can be attributed to physiological changes in the muscles that help you move. When you use those fibers to fatigue before doing resistance exercises, your form and drive are likely to suffer, which can have a noticeable impact.

So, if you want the muscle-building benefits of strength training, it makes sense to start with weight-training exercises. With that in mind, it is critical to remember that you should lift before your cardio workouts because you will have the most power and strength to lift heavier loads, making you stronger.

Finally, it is important to note that research suggests that you allow enough recovery time between strength sessions to avoid interfering with your endurance benefits. According to studies, the physiological stress from resistance training can significantly fatigue muscles and potentially slow the benefits of running or cycling sessions. Similarly, research shows that strength training before cardio increases heart rate by 10 to 12 beats per minute, which can raise your rate of perceived exertion. This increases the intensity of your workout and causes you to tire faster. This is important to remember if your goal is to go for a longer run or ride.


Researching for balance between the two

Even though science is divided on whether doing cardio or weights first is better, one thing is certain: doing both is beneficial. Finding a balance between cardio and weight training is definitely important in order to reap the full benefits of your exercise program, especially since studies have shown that combining the two is best for overall health, increasing muscle, and reducing body fat.

Of course, everyone has their own ideas about what they want to get out of their gym time. So plan yours based on your objectives. If you are still unsure about what to do, or if you want to put in maximum effort with both cardio and weight training, it is usually best to schedule these two types of workouts on different days, allowing your body to recover in between. You won't have to worry about one affecting the other this way. If you prefer to do both at the same time, it is usually advised to observe and evaluate what feels and works best for you.

Do what works best for your body at the end of the day. More importantly, whatever you choose first must be something you enjoy doing, because only then will you realize that exercise can be enjoyable. So, if you're having fun while warming up on the treadmill, don't stop just to do some weight training exercises. Continue exercising until you are ready to switch to a different type of exercise.


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