Muscle Building & Cardio: How to Get the Best Results
Muscle building and cardio go hand in hand.
But as you may have guessed doing long cardio workouts may reduce your overall body composition in a way that reduces overall mass. If your goal is to build muscle overdoing the cardio may actually inhibit your body’s to build the muscle mass you work so hard for.
Building Muscle Mass
If you want to gain muscle, doing cardio for extended periods of time may hinder your results. Studies have shown that doing weight training followed by 30 minutes of cardio may impede the body’s ability to build muscle. This is because cardio is a fat burning exercise, when completed at a moderate pace for a long duration cardiovascular exercise raises the heart rate which ultimately increases your metabolism, even when at rest. When the heart rate increases, your body goes into fat burning mode, not muscle gaining even when both weight training and cardio are done together.
The key to muscle building is to do weight training exercises while also incorporating short interval, high intensity cardio routines into your workout.
How to Get There
Short interval, high intensity cardio has been shown to burn more fat, but can also help maintain muscle size increases. To achieve your muscle building goals and get the most out of your workout, spend only about 20 minutes on high intensity cardio and the rest on resistance, or weight training.
A moderate workout that includes slow running for a long period of time may damage overall muscle growth results, so instead try doing 10, 30 second running sprints. Do this between 4 and 10 times in one workout making sure you’re going all out every single time.
If you’re a strong swimmer intervals work in the pool too! Doing 10, 25-meter length sprints as fast as you can will definitely get your heart pumping. Then just repeat the set at least 3 times, taking 30 second rests between each lap.
This type of balance between high intensity cardio workouts and weight training can deliver optimal results in the least amount of time so you can reach your ultimate goals!
Developing a Training Schedule
As you figure out your training schedule, maintain your high intensity cardio routines, doing them at least 3 times a week on alternating days, to allow your body to rest and repair. Allow yourself a varied schedule that includes different cardio workouts, whether it’s running on a Monday, swimming on a Wednesday and biking on a Friday to keep your body guessing so you keep seeing results.
Building muscle is a task that requires dedication and commitment and oh yeah… a lot of work! So be ready to sweat it out during high intensity cardio sessions and keep working on your muscle mass goals with a high-protein diet and weight bearing exercises to achieve the physique you desire.
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