Cardio myths busted
Everyone has their own fitness rules, but not all of these can actually be backed up. Misguided ideas such as believing skipping strength training in favour of cardio will help you lose weight are just plain wrong. We delve into some common gym untruths, and found out what's what when it comes to exercise.
Skip strength, focus on cardio for weight loss
As mentioned above, there is no truth in this.
“Strength training builds lean muscle mass, which both increases your metabolism and decreases fat. So the more muscle you build, the more calories you burn on a day-to-day basis," celebrity trainer Elizabeth Hendrix Burwell explained to shape.com.
Certain strength training will also see you burn more calories than if you were running; for example a kettlebell routine can see up to 20 calories burned a minute.
Hit weights or cardio first?
Many people differ in opinion when it comes to weights or cardio first, but trainer Lindsay Vastola has your answer.
“If you’re hitting the treadmill for an intense cardio session and then plan to hit the weights afterward, you’ll have little left in your tank to make your resistance training count," she told Shape. So instead, keep each work out to different days, giving the separate skills your all.
Doing cardio on an empty stomach burns more fat
No, no and no! Food is fuel and going to the gym without any in your stomach is like driving a car with no petrol in. Well, not exactly, but you get the idea. Fasted cardio is thought to burn more fat, but it also burns through muscle. Most fitness experts agree that you should avoid working out on an empty stomach.
Stay in Fat Burn zone to lose weight
The fat burning zone on the treadmill will get you working out at about 65 per cent, which is considered a low-intensity work out. Low-intensity fitness does burn more fat as fuel, but that does not compute to the optimum number of calories worked off.
“The higher the intensity of your workout, the more total calories you will burn," Florida International University professor of exercise and sports Marta Montenegro said.
"That burn lasts up to 24 hours after your last rep or step, and studies show you’ll shrink your belly fat faster."