Top fitness myth – Ambition Magazine
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Top fitness myth

The best way to lose weight is cardio, I want to lose weight first, then tone.

False!

Strength training is far superior to cardiovascular exercise for a number of reasons. Strength training burns calories up to 72 hours post exercise, increases strength, cardiovascular endurance, postural support, increases bone density, improves insulin sensitivity, and much more. The only downside is improper strength training form can result in injury.

Cardio- cardio is called that for its cardiovascular (heart) and cardio respiratory benefits, notice it doesn’t refer to weight loss or fat burn. Dr. Mercola (exercise physiologist) states, “Most people tend to focus on traditional cardio workouts when trying to lose weight, but running on a treadmill is typically not going to have any major impact on your waist size.” Cardio has been proven to decrease in fat loss effectiveness by a significant amount after about the first 4 weeks of training  (think about past experience).

There are adverse external and internal effects of cardio in reference to what most consider cardio, running. Almost all runners have significant damage to their feet, knees, lower back, and as a result have bad posture and chronic back pain. In regards to internal damage- cardio causes a release of cortisol which is a stress hormone. To blunt the release of cortisol (stress hormone) your body releases a number of processes to fight this, which we won’t get into to save time. In the end the increased stress damages your central nervous system, you become more insulin sensitive, which becomes detrimental to weight loss. I can always tell someone whose workouts are primarily cardio because their weight fluctuates up and down a lot.

A good balance of strength training and cardio is optimal, but cardio should not be the primary source of weight loss.

Devin Hawes
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