When people want to lose fat, what is the first thing they think of doing? Cardio. Right? Most people don’t think of weight training to combat fat loss. But surprisingly, weight training is going to give you more bang for your buck and do more for you when losing fat is your goal.
I like to use this metaphor when I describe cardio in comparison to weight training. Cardio is like coffee. It gives you a temporary boost. It’ll spike your heart rate, quicken your metabolism, even give you a caloric after burn. But after that, it wears off. Even though it has wonderful benefits, it still falls second to weight training for fat loss.
Weight training however, burns fat longer than cardio. In fact, you could lose fat with weight training alone. No cardio needed. The reason why it trumps cardio is because it keeps burning calories LONG after you finished. It takes longer and more energy for your body to repair and build muscle than your short burst of caffeine from your cardio does. The metabolism is boosted for about 36 hours after training and can burn an extra 10 calories an hour. That doesn’t seem like much but you times that by 36 hours, you got yourself a lot of extra burned calories. Cardio on the other hand, you might get an extra 40-80 calories burned after a moderately paced, 60 minute workout. Additionally, the more muscle you have the more efficient your body becomes in burning fat. Finally, if you want your body to have shape, you need to lift some weights. Your shoulders aren’t going to round and your butt won’t lift until you lift some weights.
If I had to give you my best answer to which is best, you want to weight train 3-5 times a week supplementing with cardio and high intensity interval training. This combination will be your best defense when trying to lose fat.
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