Both! But they are NOT created equal.
To clarify, cardio weights refers to an exercise program with the sole purpose to get you to break a sweat and ‘burn calories’. Typically, they come in the form of boot camp or large group fitness classes and involve randomly selected exercises, low weight, and high reps.
While this is not always the case, these classes are often full of women doing exercises with poor technique because the movements are done quickly, which makes it hard to relearn correct movement patterns.
The cardio, strength and weight loss benefits from this style of training might be fast but they will plateau even faster.
One of the biggest problems (apart from the increased chance of injury for anyone who is doing high repetitions with poor technique) is that as soon as you stop doing this type of exercise, weight gain comes easy.
Weight training is a completely different ball game, and its health benefits are well documented. Due to the strong emphasis on programming, weight training involves controlled progression, which means results are not only instant, they are also easily sustainable. If your goal is to improve your body composition, get toned, lose weight, get stronger, improve your performance, get fit for life, live longer etc. then prioritise resistance training. Because even with the best programming, ‘cardio’ weight training will struggle to provide the stimulus needed to achieve all of these benefits.
Don’t get me wrong, cardio is important and we program it for our members in the way of HIIT, circuits or steady state cardio (depending on their goals). But it makes up a much smaller portion of their weekly exercise program.
If you are looking to be fit, healthy, strong, energised and lean for life, then building muscle must be a top priority.
If you are new to resistance training, it’s worth bearing in mind that effective weight training requires knowledge about programming and technique. So if you’re unsure where to start, we suggest seeking out a personal trainer who can get started safely and effectively and teach you how to train for a long and healthy life ahead. It’ll be the best investment you ever made for your health!
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