How To Set Up Cardio For Building Muscle
Psssst.... Lean in. I want to tell you a secret about setting up your cardio for building muscle. It's the secret to doing it efficiently and effectively, without sacrificing your lean muscle gains. It's the way to make sure all your time sweating and grunting... trying to burn fat... pays off.
Ready for the key: Get Moving!
The most effective form of cardio for building muscle is one that allows you to move your body the most. The more you move your body, the more calories you burn.
Of course, intensity levels also play a factor. That's why jogging is more effective at burning calories than walking. Running is more intense, so it's more effective.
You want your cardio to be short and intense, so it doesn't have a negative effect on trying to build muscle.
I speak with many people each week that are unfortunately under the assumption that in order to lose a good deal of body fat, they feel they must suffer through long bouts of cardio or aerobics.
This simply is not the case, in fact too much cardio can actually be counterproductive to building muscle.
By doing too much aerobic work, you run the risk of overtraining and severely limiting your body's ability to recover and get stronger. Excessive cardio can also dip into your body's ability to add new lean muscle tissue due to the lack of sufficient rest.
So how much cardio do you need for losing fat without having a negative effect on building muscle?
Recent studies have shown that as little as 15 to 20 minutes of cardio 3 to 4 times a week is sufficient at losing body fat and keeping the fat off for good. However, the cardio you perform should be at a very intense level, meaning for the duration of the 15 minutes you are working very hard with no pausing to rest.
It is this ultra intense exercise that is so effective at burning calories, which in turn leads to burning body fat.
Want to know one of the most effective and intense methods of cardio?
Go to the deep end of a swimming pool, jump in, and tread water as though your life depends on staying afloat (well, I guess, actually it does).
I don't mean just leisurely trying to stay above water. I mean flapping your arms, kicking your legs, and slashing around as though it's "sink or swim" time.
It's effective at burning calories because you're moving your entire body at a very intense pace. Try it.
And if you can run, don't walk.
Other effective forms of cardio include jogging, the Stairmaster, the Elliptical. Whatever. It's not so much what you do, it's how you do it.
And believe me, comfort can kill goals.
Just choose something that allows you to maintain a higher intensity level. It boils down to whatever machine you feel you can work the hardest on because cardio is all about intensity.
Greater intensity over a shorter time period (15-20 minutes) will have a bigger impact on the fat burning process and less of any negative effects on muscle building.
Sometimes the best way to choose your cardio is to try a couple different machines. After you compare a few different ones, you'll figure out which ones work the best. Which ones you feel that will allow you to work the hardest on.
Please, don't make the mistake I see several people in the gym make. They grab the daily paper and sit on a bike, lightly pedaling as though breaking a sweat will be the death of them.
Please. You get back what you put in.
If one of your goals is to lose your love handles and get rid of some of that stubborn fat, start picking up the pace of cardio.
Again, the more you move your entire body (at an intense pace) the more calories you burn and the more effective your cardio is. Move, move more of yourself, and move often and soon you'll begin reaping the rewards. This is how you set up your cardio for building muscle while losing fat.
Learn how to set up your weight training, cardio, and nutrition for building muscle and losing fat in less time...