Hi guys,  Kris from Custom Fitness here, your Amarillo personal trainer. Today we’re going to be talking about which is better for weight loss: cardio or weight training? If you have any questions about today’s blog, then please give us a call at (806)-322-3188

So, this is always a hot topic, right? We want to know what we’re doing. We want to make sure that what we’re doing is most efficient and that we’re not wasting our time, our money, our energy, any of those things.

So if you Google this topic, you’re going to find expert opinions on both sides of the spectrum. And I’ve never really been a fan of listening to all of those so-called experts, so I like to dig a little deeper into the science and the research to really back it up.

So let me preface this by saying that if you want to lose weight properly and keep it off for life, it really does start with your nutrition. That’s got to be the foundation that you’ve got built and then you add in the training. Now you can do both at the same time, but we’ve got to have that nutrition component. And that’s why here at the studio we give that complementary to our private training members because we believe that that is such an important part of the equation that you really can’t reach your goals without it.

All right, so as far as which type of training is better, researchers over at Wake Forest University recently published a study with some really interesting findings. The research team studied a group of adults looking to lose weight and they did it over an 18 month period. They split the group into three categories: diet and weight training, diet and cardio and then a group of diet only.

All three groups lost weight. Go figure, right? But both groups who added in the exercise component actually lost significantly more weight.

So, who won? Cardio or weights? Well, it seems like it’s not really told in there, but it actually is because the weight training group lost more weight, but only by a slight margin.

So, the researchers didn’t actually stop there, they took it a step further and they examined the type of weight that was lost – a very important factor here. They broke down how much of the weight loss was muscle versus how much of the weight loss was fat.

Then the group that performed the cardio exercises only lost weight. A significant amount of that weight was lean muscle mass compared to the weight training group who lost a very small percentage of muscle mass, if any.

So why is it important? Some of you might say, “I don’t care as long as the scale says what I want it to say.”

Well, it’s important because loss of lean muscle mass can have important consequences given the high risk of physical disability among growing population of older adults. So as people age, having less muscle mass is actually affecting them at a very high rate and causing them levels of disability, lacking in their quality of life. They’re not able to do the things they want to do. So it’s going to have a profound effect on that quality of life.

So I can’t really argue that getting people to a healthy weight is important overall for health because we do want to value the longevity of being active for a long time, so we need to have some muscle mass in there. We need to lift some weights with it. What kind of weights are we doing? Could be all sorts of different things. It could be your body weight, it could be extra resistance with dumbbells or barbells or things like that, it could be band weight.

So there’s a lot of different ways to add resistance to what you’re doing. And that resistance is absolutely crucial to a longevity of a high quality of life. If you want longevity, then we can talk about other things. But that’s where this discussion kind of comes from today is we always have people that say they go to the gym and they get on the cardio machines for 30 or 45 minutes. Or they’ve been doing this really restrictive diet and they’ve lost weight. But then as they start to build muscle, they start to get scared because their body starts to change in different ways than what they were ready for.

If we can keep this idea that our health and our ability to move and be active and perform comes from having muscle mass, sometimes that can help a little bit. So I hope that helps you to kind of work through it.

Also, kind of think about the idea that fat is more fluffy, if you will, than muscle is. Muscle is much more dense. So you can actually stay the same weight or possibly gain just a little bit and completely reshape your body. If you get down to that true why that we’ve talked about of why you want to lose the weight and why it’s important to you, you may find that reshaping your body, building strength and higher quality of life can actually be a huge benefit to reaching those goals.

So, if you are wanting the accountability and help with creating an action plan to see results, or are wanting to someone to help create a workout plan to push you to your greatest potential, then that’s what we’re here for. We work with our clients not just on fitness, but also nutrition. What we do is we will ensure that you are supported throughout every aspect of your health and wellness journey, and that includes making those eating changes. We have an entire team of dedicated professionals to help you with your health and fitness goals. To get your consultation set up, give us a call at 806-322-3188 or email us at info@customfitness.biz At Custom Fitness, we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo, Texas. Have a great day.