Today I want to talk cardio.
Said one of my clients….
“As long as we don’t have to do lots of running or sitting on a bike, I will be a happy client!”
My client had been told that to burn fat effectively, she would need to do lots of cardio, hence her comment…
^^^ Eugh! ^^^
The look on her face was priceless when I told her we wouldn’t set foot on the treadmill and that the stationary bike would be gathering dust.
“The most effective way to burn body fat is with heavy weight training,”
I explained that compound movements (squats, deadlifts, pull ups, farmers walk etc) recruit lots of muscle fibres within the large muscle groups and release anabolic hormones like testosterone and IGF-1. This means they will promote muscle mass and strength, and in turn, burn a lot of body fat.
This is opposed to ‘traditional cardio’ that many use to try and burn fat. Things like the cross trainer, stepper, the treadmill and aerobic based classes which can be catabolic in nature. Catabolism is a metabolic pathway where the body breaks down muscle tissue and uses this as a source of energy.
Let me make one thing clear here:
There is a time and place for low intensity aerobic activity like long walks or the cross trainer, so PLEASE don’t think I have a problem with cardio. I actually quite enjoy running and go fairly regularly. However, I choose sprint based running rather than long, slow jogs. 12 x 100m sprints for example.
Running doesn’t suck.
Cardio doesn’t suck.
Ineffective, waste of time cardio sucks.
Effective, modified strongman, cardio based activities can be very useful in the fat loss arsenal, for both men and women.
Focus on exercises that use 2, 3 or more muscles at the same time. Exercises that really give a “BANG FOR YOUR BUCK!”
As always, work harder on your nutrition than you do in the gym for accelerated results.