It does increase cardiovascular health, but it's not essential for people trying to lose weight. That's right – you can cut without doing traditional cardio.
Adding cardio into a cutting phase is not necessary, however, it can help in that it burns additional calories. In some instances, burning 200 calories more a day may be easier than eating 200 calories less per day. That is ultimately up to the individual.
Assuming you're cutting calories and lifting weights three to four days per week (three is the minimum amount that most trainers say you need to see progress), you only need about three cardio days per week to see your abs.
You do not need to do cardio exercise to lose fat. You can lose fat by restricting caloric intake, by doing resistance training, or by a combination of both. The main factor in losing body fat is taking in fewer calories than you expend. Cardio can help you expend more calories, but is not absolutely necessary.
And while it's true that doing steady state cardio probably will help with weight loss, experts say it's totally unnecessary if your main goal is fat loss. In fact, you can lose weight just by lifting weights.
As a rule of thumb, your total cardio for the week should take no more than half the time you spend lifting weights. So if you spend 90 minutes 4 times per week lifting weights (6 hours), that means you should do no more than 3 total hours of cardio per week.
Bodybuilders typically perform both strength training and cardio during a cutting diet or pre-contest phase. They do so while being very lean with little body fat and with the goal of maintaining as much as much muscle mass as possible.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services , you should get at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise or 75 to 150 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise each week to see substantial changes.
You don't HAVE to use cardio to get abs
You don't need to spend hours on the treadmill to build abs - but cardio can be a useful tool to burn fat and calories if fat loss is your goal. Just don't overdo it, says James.
Cardio after training is beneficial because it cools you down and helps you loosen up after the intense session. You can do it for 10-30 minutes, depending on your fitness goals. If you're trying to lose weight, then you'll want to burn extra calories so lean towards 20-30 minutes of cardio after weight lifting.
He puts in an hour and a half daily, cycling for 45 to 60 minutes and lifting weights for another 30. That's a hell of a daily workout, especially for a 75-year-old, though it's down considerably from his peak bodybuilding days.
A cutting diet lasts 2–4 months, depending on how lean you are before dieting, and is normally timed around bodybuilding competitions, athletic events, or occasions like holidays ( 4 ).
Summing It Up
It's pretty simple. If you're lean enough to bulk (10-15% body fat or less for a man, or 18-23% or less for a woman), you should probably bulk first. If you're above these ranges, you should cut first. And if you're a beginner who's somewhere in the middle, you should recomp.
Furthermore, the longer the cut, the more muscle mass is lost overall since it is impossible to avoid muscle loss, so keep this in mind. Most bodybuilders do not exceed cuts of 4 months but usually do at least 2 months.
So, what are the best rep ranges for cutting? The best rep range for cutting is one that allows you to sometimes train with heavier loads to preserve basic strength (5-10 reps) and more moderate to light loads to allow you to retain as much muscle while training in higher volumes (10-20 reps).
The way Golden Era bodybuilders approached weight training and cardio was novel and set the standard for what followed. Prior to these decades, bodybuilding was more of an underground enterprise, but competitors such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and his peers helped elevate the sport into the mainstream.
Arnold trained hard, and there were no secrets to his gains other than pounding out the sets and reps with good heavy weights. Of course we all eventually had injuries to deal with that changed the game, but in the early days, there was nothing more fun than intense, heavy training with classic movements.
No, Arnold did not overtrain. Arnold had a style called volume training. This included high numbers of repetitions and sets for just about every exercise he performed. His idea was the more time under tension the muscles spent; the more they would be signaled to grow.
Though exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, it is also important to avoid overdoing the workout routine. For most adults, exercising between 30 and 45 minutes a day is enough to gain the benefits of exercise without changing the benefits to extreme fatigue.
Do cardio after weights if your main goal is weight loss. Doing cardio after weight training burned more fat during the first 15 minutes of that cardio workout versus starting with cardio and then lifting, according to a study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
The best types of cardio to aid in weight loss are either low-impact, low intensity cardio like rowing, incline walking, and biking, or HIIT workouts implemented in small doses such as kickboxing, interval training, and weight training.