You gained a few unwanted pounds over the years and would like to start exercising to change your current lifestyle. You have a goal in mind but you just don’t know the best strategy to achieve it. Cardio will definitely help you burn calories each day, but it shouldn’t be the only form of exercise you should incorporate for long term results. I think everyone who is or has been overweight in the past like myself can agree that yes they would like to lose weight, but also keep it off for as long as possible. So your approach to change your current lifestyle matters.
Cardio in simple terms can be seen as a way to subtract calories from your daily diet. For example, lets say you need a 2,000 calories to maintain your current body weight and eat 300 calories over that caloric intake, in theory you will need to burn 300 calories doing cardio to prevent weight gain. I say “weight gain” and not “fat gain” because the average person can afford a scale to weigh themselves everyday but the average person can’t afford to accurately track their body fat. So cardio burns calories during exercise only but not after which is going to be very important to understand my next key points.
Resistance training on the other hand adds stress to our muscle tissues to break them down so that they grow bigger, better, stronger through rest, recovery and proper nutrition while burning more calories in the long term. Resistance training also adds stress to our joints to improve our daily movements. If you ever suffered from knee pains from being overweight, incorporating exercises such as squats, lunges or step ups will improve your joint strength. After consistently training your lower body, it soon becomes easier and easier to go up that flight of stairs at your apartment complex or at work that you once struggle due to pain in your knee(s).
So which one should you choose cardio or resistance training? If you have access to a gym or have gym equipment at home, the answer is to perform both for different reasons.Cardio will give you the added calories burn as well as improve your cardiovascular system. If you ever been gasping for air when chasing after your child, adding a form of cardio will improve your lung capacity. Incorporating proper resistance training will help you build muscle which require more calories. They more muscle you have built, the more calories you will need to eat. Who can say no to that? I still reach my weight loss goals without having to consume an extremely low caloric intake and/or having to do hours of cardio on the treadmill a day? Implementing these two forms of exercise will not only help you lose weight and build the physique you once wished for, but it will also improve your way of life so that you can enjoy the things you like to do the way you like to do them.