Exercise! - Just Cardio?
12-30-2010, 10:52 AM
Is doing just cardio bad? Even though I workout 5/6 days a week, I notice that most of my workouts are more cardio. My main workouts are running, elliptical, Turbo Jam and Body Combat. Should I do doing more? I'm asking because I'm really not all that happy with my results, I feel like I should be getting tighter than i am. Thanks! :)
12-30-2010, 11:09 AM
Good for you working out 5-6 days a week! Kudos! I think you answered your own question though - if you're not getting the results you want, then it's going to be hard to stay motivated.
Everyone's body is different, but being a cardio-queen myself, I'll tell you what happened with me and my tons of cardio: nothing, except I never got out of breath anymore. I had to start doing weights and yoga (strength training) in order to see any results. I didn't lose weight from cardio and I didn't see much happening as far as muscle tone. The better shape I got in cardio-wise, the fewer calories I was burning doing similar workouts. However, I like the buzz and stamina I get from the cardio, so I still do it. But if you want to see visual results, I'd add in 2 or 3 weight training sessions in place of (or in addition to) your cardio. Just my opinion, but I am definitely not an expert. I'm sure there will be lots of great input on this from the other members.
12-30-2010, 11:30 AM
The answer really depends on what your goals are. Ideally, yes, strength training is excellent and helps you retain muscle that may be lost during weight loss. It improves your appearance and makes you feel awesome!
In the short term, you need to be prepared that starting a strength training program will most likely temporarily increase your weight. This is caused primarily by water retention when your muscles are sore. Secondly, be prepared that you will have sore muscles and that is normal and actually a good thing :). Take at least a day off between muscle groups and do plenty of stretching and drinking water (this will help).
Some people don't like to lift weights or they become discouraged when they see scale gains or feel sore. If that is going to prevent you from exercising at all, than by all means stick to cardio. All exercise is going to build muscle to some extent.
12-30-2010, 11:57 AM
i've got the same dilemma. I run at least thrice a week for 40 minutes to get me sweating. Although it's helping me maintain my weight, I'd still want to lose more.
For two years, I did an hour of cardio a day, every day (yes, EVERY DAY, including Christmas morning, after major snowstorms while wearing Yak Trax to grip the ice, once during an electrical storm, as early as 4:30 AM & as late as 10 PM) and I lost weight. I joined a gym & switched to machines, to be less subject to the weather.
But no one at the gym said things like, "You've lost weight, haven't you?" and "Your arms look really great" and "Your whole body composition has changed" until I added Pilates twice a week & free weights three times a week.
Funny thing is, I lost maybe four, five pounds, and hated to tell people that, when they asked.
But the difference was, I wasn't just doing cardio every day.
And I miss it. For the past week & a half, because my trapezius got pulled, I've just been doing cardio, and I feel **flabby.** It's probably not reality. But it's indicative of a changed mindset in me. I understand that I need a more comprehensive approach. It's my whole body moving through this life, so why would I ignore most of it to focus on my legs & butt & my heart health?
Also, it's kept me from being bored by cardio & just phoning it in, cardio session after cardio session.
12-30-2010, 06:04 PM
Thanks for your input! I'm just getting so tired of running and not seeing anything from it. i think i'm going to try some yoga and weights and see how that works.