Weightlifting Vs Cardio: Which One Should I Do First?
This is a discussion that has been gaining a lot of attention lately, even though is not a new one. Knowing whether you should start your workout with cardio first, or with weights first, should be determined based on your fitness goals and fitness level.
The main benefit of doing cardio before weights is that it increases your heart rate while also promoting blood flow. This helps the body warm up and get itself ready for a workout, and as we know, it is incredibly important to warm up your muscles as it reduces the risk of straining them and injuring yourself.
If you are training for an event like a marathon or triathlon, then doing cardio first will help ensure you have better running stats, as you won't have tired yourself out from lifting weights before.
It can also spike your heart rate before you start lifting which can increase your metabolic rate throughout the rest of your workout.
If you are planning to do your workout in this order - cardio before weights - you should try going for a light run or brisk walk for 20-30 minutes. It is not recommended that you do an hour-long HIIT, kickboxing, or spin class first, as it can increase your breathing for a long period of time, making it harder to transition from that high-intensity workout into a slower-paced strength training session.
When To Do Cardio First:
- If you want better endurance
There are many advantages to lifting weights before cardio, which is probably the reason why it has been becoming a more popular choice for many gym-goers.
Doing weights before cardio means you will be able to do more reps and increase your performance, and by keeping cardio until after, you will find that you will also have a lot more energy to lift with.
Although cardio can be challenging and tiring, it is usually able to be performed for a longer period of time without resting, whereas weight training can tend to demand a higher intensity - meaning it can be better to lead with weights, devoting the majority of your energy to that, and then doing your cardio afterward.
When To Do Weights First:
- If you want to burn fat and lose weight
- If you want to get stronger
- If you want lower body strength on training days
To Sum It Up
Cardio first will elevate your heart rate as well as your internal temperature and metabolism. This will help you burn a lot more calories than you would if you were just lifting weights, or if you were doing weights first.
On the flip side, starting with weights will give you all the energy you need to lift as heavy as you can handle, making it easier to build muscle. If your aim is to build strength, try saving your cardio until after your weight training.
While there are arguments and facts that back up both options, you should remember that it all comes down to your fitness goals, and you should workout whichever way you prefer - as long as you are moving your body and doing your best, you really can't go wrong!
If your goal is just general fitness, then it won't matter which one you do first, so enjoy yourself by creating a fun and efficient training routine!