This is a very simple question: Should I do cardio before or after weights? However, the answer is not so easy. In fact, there are some different variables that affect whether weight after weight training makes more sense to do cardio before cardio or cardio. One of the biggest factors is your overall fitness goal. Whether you are trying to lose weight, gain strength. Or conditioning and overall health determine the intensity of your workout routine. Which, in turn, can determine whether it is understood to do cardio before or after weight training.
Cardio vs. Weight Training
In addition to fitness goals, the important variables to consider when deciding the order of cardio vs. weight training include:
- The Intensity of each component: are you performing a simple aerobics routine of steady-state cardio. Or high-intensity interval training (HIIT)? Do you perform a low rep, heavy lifting or high rep training to failure?
- Duration of each component: is cardio a marathon or short but intense session?
- Conditioning: how do your muscles feel after cardio vs. weights? What fatigues you more?
- Motivation/mindset: do you prefer to get one form of exercise done first? Are you more focused earlier in your workout or later?
Cardio Before Weights
Cardio before weight training proved to be beneficial in a small study of ten men conducted by Brigham Young University. The findings are as follows:
- EPOS (Calorie Post Burn Effect) was the highest when cardio was done before weight training.
- After weight training, cardio was more physical than cardio before weight training.
- The overall recommendation “was to perform an anaerobic exercise before exercising resistance while combining in an exercise session.”
Although it is believed that the study of ten people shows me the truth. I certainly agree that there are some benefits of doing cardio before weighing. But I think the conclusions of burning fat can be questionable.
Cardio After Weights
Making cardio after weight training always seems more practical to me. I like to make sure I have a high energy level so that I can lift heavyweights. In addition, heavyweight training requires coordination and focus. I tend to use cardio as my leg workout. But imagine trying to perform a set of heavy squats after a 45-minute cardio session. That being said, the inverse is also true in that trying to run after doing heavy squats isn’t the easiest thing in the world either.
Recommendations Based on Fitness Goals
While I believe in doing cardio after weights or even splitting cardio and weight training into separate workouts. Here are my recommendations for exercise order based on common fitness goals:
- Increase the muscles: cardio after weight; Use high energy levels to maximize weight training workouts
- Increase cardiovascular endurance: cardio before weight; Use high energy levels to maximize HIIT or marathon workout
- Burn fat: it depends! Many early weight training benefits from doing cardio before training. Because they can burn more calories by performing long cardio routine relative to the weight training routine. Which makes them tirelessly fast. However, with more advanced exercises, resistance training can get a good release of HGH and fatty acids. And follow the cardio to burn fatty acids in the bloodstream.
- Health Improvement: When it comes to improving overall health, the order has no effect.
Cardio Before or After Weights
The bottom line is that there is no clear answer to this question: should I do cardio before or after weight? After weight training, cardio is more beneficial to increase muscle size and strength. But cardio cardiovascular can help to improve endurance before weight. Use your own unique goals and experiences to feel the best for your body.