Cardio or Weights: Which Comes First? Unveiling the Ultimate Exercise Order!

Cardio exercises are beneficial for enhancing oxygen intake in the body. The term “cardio exercise” encompasses various physical activities that elevate the heart rate, promote increased blood circulation, and encourage deeper breathing. Engaging in these activities can greatly improve overall fitness and well-being.

Cardio exercises like running, cycling, swimming, and hiking are essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It is recommended to engage in these activities regularly for at least 30 minutes, multiple times a week, to fully reap their benefits. Start your fitness journey today and enjoy all the advantages of cardio workouts!

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Simply put, incorporating these exercises into your daily routine is crucial to reaping their benefits. Waiting for tangible results without consistent practice may yield little progress. Start experiencing the advantages by making these exercises a part of your regular regimen.

What are cardio exercises?

What are cardio exercises

In practice, these exercises are divided into two basic types:

  • High-intensity cardio (HIIT): This is a group of intense exercises for a few minutes followed by a break, and the duration of the entire exercise may not exceed 20 minutes.
  • Low-intensity cardio exercises (LISS): such as walking, light jogging, and light swimming, in addition to training on a treadmill. However, unlike heat exercises, they are less effective in burning fat and calories, because they require longer sessions ranging between 40 and 60 minutes.

To burn fat, it is recommended to enhance your cardio exercise duration by at least an hour, 3 to 4 times per week, focusing on activities that maximize calorie expenditure. This approach can aid in achieving optimal results for fat loss.

Squats, along with walking, running, climbing exercises, and jumping rope, are exceptional cardiovascular exercises that yield impressive results. These exercises engage and strengthen large muscles in the lower body, making them highly effective for achieving desired fitness goals.

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For guidance on choosing appropriate cardio exercises tailored to your body, it’s advisable to consult a professional fitness trainer. Their expertise will ensure optimal results and promote a safe workout routine. Get the guidance you need to enhance your fitness journey with the help of a trusted fitness trainer. Discover the best cardio exercises for you and achieve your fitness goals effectively.

Benefits of cardio exercises

Cardio exercises, also known as cardiovascular exercises, have a direct impact on the heart and blood vessels. These exercises involve body movement, benefiting cardiovascular health. Incorporating cardio workouts into your fitness routine can improve heart health and blood flow.

The benefits of cardio exercises are many, noting that the body must be accustomed to it gradually because it is exhausting and requires quite a bit of effort. Here are its most prominent benefits: 

Improving heart health: The heart muscle weakens over time, which may increase the chance of developing heart and arterial diseases. Practicing cardio regularly helps speed up the heartbeat and improve the breathing process, which contributes to strengthening the heart muscle and protecting it from diseases.

Reducing the possibility of diabetes: When you practice these exercises regularly, your muscles become more able to use glucose properly, which contributes to keeping blood sugar levels under control.

Maintaining a healthy weight: You must be careful to burn a certain amount of calories daily if you want to maintain your current weight. Burning a relatively high amount of calories helps in obtaining sufficient energy, which positively affects weight.

Cardio…before or after lifting weights?

Cardio before or after lifting weights

Is it better to do cardio before or after lifting weights? A question we often ask fitness trainers in the gym, as we who exercise regularly. But the rule here is simple: start with the hardest. 

We must give priority to exercises that require a high level of energy and concentration because our energy is at its highest level when we start exercising. Therefore, it is recommended to do weight lifting exercises that require high physical effort before cardio exercises. 

Lifting weights is the most difficult exercise for many people, which is why it is best to start with it. Cardio exercises – including running – are very stressful for our central nervous system and deplete a lot of carbohydrate stores in our muscles, more than weight lifting exercises. 

According to exercise physiologist Dr. Alyssa Oleinik, speaking to Self magazine, beginning with cardiovascular exercises before weightlifting can lead to increased fatigue. Fatigue from activities like running or cycling may impact our energy levels and make weightlifting more challenging.

When considering our goals, it’s crucial to align our focus accordingly. If your objective is to enhance physical strength, incorporating weightlifting into your routine is recommended. For sprinting or cycling races, prioritize cardio exercises before strength training. Tailor your training to your specific goals to optimize performance and achieve desired results.

Even if you don’t have a specific plan, your desire is what directs you toward the right choice. This means that if you want to increase your speed with cardio exercises, start with them. If you are working on lifting heavier weights, start with dumbbells. Noting that doing cardio, especially jogging, after lifting weights is excellent for burning fat.

According to a study published in the Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports in 2007, combining cardiovascular exercise with weightlifting can potentially enhance fat burning within the initial 15 minutes. This study emphasizes the potential advantages of including cardio workouts in your fitness routine for optimal results.

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