Is Cardio The Best Exercise For Weight Loss?

Most people envision running or doing other types of cardio for weight loss. While cardio does torch calories, other types of exercise can be more beneficial if your primary goal is to lose weight. You need all four types of exercise, strength, cardio, endurance, and balance, to be your fittest. All of those types of exercise can burn calories, but there are two that burn the most.

Cardio and strength-building exercises both torch calories.

There’s no denying it, cardio does burn many calories. Strength-building also burns calories like crazy. Including cardio in your workout makes sense, but you shouldn’t make it your only type of exercise. Cardio doesn’t discriminate on where it gets the calories it burns. It can use fat tissue for it or lean muscle mass. That creates a problem.

Strength training burns as many calories as cardio but has another benefit.

When you do strength training, you’ll also burn calories galore. The difference is that you’ll build muscle tissue, instead of tearing it down and using it for energy. That makes losing weight easier. Muscle tissue requires more calories for energy, so the more you have, the higher your resting metabolism and the more calories you burn 24/7. Strength training burns fat and builds muscle, increasing your metabolism the more you do it.

You can do both and add flexibility training to it.

Flexibility training doesn’t burn nearly as many calories as other types of exercise, but you need it just as much. It helps prevent injury and increases your range of motion so you can continue doing other types of exercise. If you want to increase the calories you burn, consider making your strength training a cardio workout, too. Make it a HIIT workout—high intensity interval training. It’s not a specific exercise, but a way of doing any exercise. You work out at peak intensity for a minute, switch to recovery intensity for equal or longer time, and revert to high intensity.

  • Consistency is the key regardless of the type of workout you do. Varying your workout is also important. When you do the same exercise repeatedly, it improves efficiency and burns fewer calories.
  • Just because strength training burns lots of calories and builds muscle, it doesn’t mean you should quit doing cardio. Just balance your workouts and include all types of exercise.
  • Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption—EPOC—causes the body to burn extra calories after you quit exercising. Intense strength training triggers it.
  • If you aren’t sure how to get started, our personal trainers can help you. You’ll get a complete assessment of your overall fitness and a trainer will create a plan specifically for your needs and fitness level.

For more information, contact us today at Thrive Fitness Atlanta