If you’re wondering when to do your cardio workouts, this blog post should sort out any confusion.
Cardio Workouts | When Is the Best Time to Do It?
Knowing Your Cardio Exercise According to Goal
Cardio workouts come in different forms. These include fasted morning cardio and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). None of these are better than the others. Your choice for cardiovascular exercise depends on many factors. You can do cardio exercises for weight loss, for example.
Another key element is timing. Before you can figure out the best schedule, you need to establish some context.
To know the right cardio workouts, analyze your fitness goals. There are a few things to consider. For example, if you are a runner, a cardio workout may need to be a priority. Runners can still benefit from weight training (and experts recommend it). It will serve a more complementary role for a runner, though.
If you want to reduce belly fat, cardio workouts don’t need to become your priority. For many people, cardio is helpful when one is trying to lose weight. If they want to drop body fat, the first thing they do is jump on a treadmill.
Fat loss occurs when there’s a deficit in calories. Burn more than you eat and place yourself into a negative energy balance. That said, some form of light and good cardio exercises should still be in your plan. Do so, however, if you want to reap the benefits of aerobic exercise.
Obtaining Your Physique
There are four pillars of a successful physique structure. You need the appropriate combination of the following to obtain optimal composition and health:
- Resistance Training
- Cardio Workouts
The fourth will be the primary pillar to address here. A lot of people overlook the cardiovascular work one gets from resistance training. Anybody who’s ever done barbell squats will tell you they are breathing hard upon the set’s conclusion.
Anytime your heart rate goes up and the breathing quickens, you are “working” the cardiovascular system. It also works around the clock. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be around today.
When Should You Do Your Cardio Workouts?
You can do cardio workouts after weight training. If it’s high-intensity interval training (HIIT), it may call for a separate workout. You may still, however, complete it after weight training.
Let’s assume your goal is fat loss and muscle retention (a great goal by the way!). You have a one-hour time frame each day to do your workout. Use the majority of the hour to weight train. It can be between 40 and 45 minutes. Do this first.
Then cap off your workout with low steady-state cardio. It should not exhaust you like HIIT. A low-impact workout is also easy to recover from. You can do it even with the most exhaustive weight training programs.
You can follow a weight training workout with HIIT cardio. Perhaps the only time to do the reverse is when you’re training to be an elite athlete. It may not be ideal to do the regimen any more than three times a week, and that’s for highly trained individuals. If you’re new to HIIT, you may find one per week to be enough.
Find out more about cardio workouts in this video from Dedley Smedley:
In every scenario, prioritize weight training over cardio workouts. Only a few circumstances will require the opposite. As always, the answers aren’t so black and white. Many variables are at play. You must know your goals so you can determine what course of action suits you best!
What are your favorite cardio workouts? Share your list in the comments section below!