Which Is Better for Fat Loss - Cardio vs Resistance Exercise?


While it’s true that you’ll burn more calories during a cardio workout than during a resistance training workout, there are several reasons that the resistance work is still far more important.

You see, the calories that you’re using for your cardio workout stop being used as soon as you finish your workout, just like you’d expect. But, when you’re doing a resistance workout, that doesn’t happen and instead our resistance workout gives our metabolism a boost which lasts for up to 72 hours after the workout!

The other issue with using cardio workouts to lose weight is that our bodies learn over time to become more efficient – especially when we’re eating in a calorie deficit. So the net result is that you’re burning LESS calories during the cardio workout you did today compared to when you did the same workout a couple of weeks ago!

Our bodies do become more efficient at resistance work too, but the way that happens is by our bodies gaining lean tissue – which is calorie hungry stuff in itself. Through the gain of this muscle, we’re also now able to move more weight – and all of this adds up to mean that you’ll actually need MORE calories to perform the same workout today than you did a couple of weeks ago.

When we’re aiming to lose weight, we’re eating in a caloric deficit. If we’re also simply adding more and more cardio exercise in order to maintain the calorie burn we need, then our bodies will start to let go of muscle and hold on to fat in preference.¬†With less muscle on our bodies, our metabolism starts to drop, and we find ourselves having to eat less and less and exercise more and more in order to not gain weight.

This all said, let’s take the cardio exercise out from under the bus now because there is a benefit to adding in some non-resistance type exercise too. Alongside a good resistance training program, you can use cardio exercise to increase your calorie deficit without having to reduce your food intake.

Remember too that there’s no need to go for a ‘traditional cardio workout’ like a run or a cycle – particularly if you don’t enjoy these types of exercise. Increasing your step count and finding ways to move more during the day is surprisingly effective too.

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