When we speak about cardio – the most popular types are walking, jogging and sprinting. Depending on your specific fitness goals there are certain types of cardio that are better suited to everyone. But generally speaking the human body needs to burn more calories (energy output) than we eat (energy input) in order to lose weight. Cardio is one form of exercise that can help contribute to this “energy output”. If your main fitness goals are to focus on FAT & WEIGHT loss then a low intensity steady state would be suited for you. Walking burns the most fat per calorie when compared to jogging and sprinting. Fat requires o2 (oxygen) in order to be broken down for energy. The lower the intensity, the more oxygen is available to be used by the body to break down fat. When jogging/ sprinting LESS o2 is available – meaning that your body will use different sources for energy like carbs for energy. No matter what the intensity levels are at – cardio is excellent to build and increase your fitness levels and stamina.
Resistance/ Weight Training
When completing a steady state cardio (e.g jogging or walking at the same pace) this may burn more calories per minute BUT resistance training will continue to burn calories even after completing the workout! If you’re one to sit on the couch after training -your body is still working and burning off calories. This is called EPOC (Excess- Post- Exercise Oxygyen Consumption). The best part of resistance training is that you mainly lose FAT, rather than losing different ranges of muscle masses when cardio is completed. Losing muscle mass will mean your WEIGHT on the scale is lower, but may not give you the body you desire. Resistance training protects, shapes and maintains your muscles – and “tones” your body up to the shape you want it to be.
Cardio and Resistance training both have their advantages – but the best method for general weight loss is incorporating BOTH cardio and weight training. If in your case, your goal is to lose a large amount of weight cardio is a great way to increase your fitness levels and burning calories quickly. But to achieve that dreamy, toned and sculpted body of yours – you will need to add some weights into your workouts.
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
HIIT workouts are an awesome way to increase your body’s fat burning ability. Of course with everyday busy schedules, not everyone has the time for a long walk after work (multiple times a week), which is optimal for weight loss. BUT performing just a 15 minute HIIT session can actually burn more fat than going for an hour walk. High intensity interval training produces an ‘after- burn’ effect similar to what happends to your body after resistance training. This is a great training method that is time effective which gets your heart rate up fast and burns more fat in less time than ANY other workout.