What’s the Story on Cardio?

What’s the Story on Cardio?

Many of us spent decades doing too much cardio and not eating enough to fuel our bodies – certainly not enough for muscle growth, let alone fat loss.

So – should you be doing cardio and if so, how much?

I personally love cardio – within reason. Even during my build phase where I’m eating more to build muscle and focusing on lifting heavy in the gym, I complete at least 4 cardio sessions of a minimum of 20 minutes a week. I do at least the same during my maintenance phase. Cardio is important for heart health, especially as you age. I also like the way I feel when I complete a ride. I keep my heart rate, on average for the ride, between 70-75% of my max rate.

During a cut, where I’m working to lose body fat, my coach slowly increases my cardio, generally by 5 minutes a week (this is part of the reason a well thought out cut takes so long) and, over the months of my cut, I generally increase days so that I’m doing 60 minutes of cardio 7 days a week (in addition to my weight training).

Once I’ve reached my goal weight (or its show time!), we slowly reverse that cardio (i.e. reducing by 5 minutes a session) over a similar period so that my body can slowly adjust to the change.

Cardio is a great tool to help with fat loss, but it’s not the answer alone. Fat loss is accomplished in the kitchen. It’s following a macro based nutrition plan that is the key to losing body fat, but cardio (and steps) are great tools to assist in that goal.

So don’t get rid of the cardio – use it wisely as an important tool in your tool box to achieve your goals.

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