I have never been fond of cardio, ive been known to have a very short attention span and running / walking in one spot for 15 minutes is like having that itch you can’t reach. I also don’t like doing something that doesn’t serve the purpose of my goals. Cardio has its place and makes a great tool for progression, however traditional cardio’s benefits for “fat loss” are limited to the time spent performing the activity as opposed to interval training (HIIT),weight lifting.
By traditional cardio, I mean constant steady state cardio for long bouts. A lot of people’s idea of cardio is hopping on a piece of cardio equipment, setting it on a random program and go at it for an hour. This trains the aerobic energy systems of the body. Unless your goal is to run a marathon, this will do nothing but improve your fitness and that’s if you use enough intensity and adequate programming.
A better way to approach cardio is to incorporate high intensity interval training, complexes and other protocols that tap in your anaerobic energy systems and elevate EPOC Levels.
EPOC level is the “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption” level; which is basically the disruption of your metabolic rate that leads to your body having to compensate for with excess oxygen to make up for the debt. Ever had an intense workout and felt warm throughout the day? That’s your EPOC levels being elevated. Based on varying intensities and different physical exercises, studies have shown that EPOC levels can be elevated for up to 38 hours post “weight/resistance” training compared to being elevated for just 14 hours with cardio. Now that’s more than double the time where your metabolism is elevated for the same time spent in the gym.
If running is your high, you can incorporate sprints in your routine. Sprints are great for leg development and studies have shown that sprints help target stubborn fat. Can’t lose the last 5 pounds, give sprints a try and you wont regret it.
Whether you’ve been a member at your gym for a few years or just joined one recently, there’s always one thing you always see…..A large group of familiar faces at the cardio machines. I’m referring to those people who day in day out are on the treadmill for 1 – 1 1/2 hour. One thing these gym goers have in common is that since the first day you saw them, they haven’t changed.
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