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  1. #1
    Registered User -Volume's Avatar
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    If lifting burns more calories why should I do cardio?

    Firstly I'm 310 pounds.

    All I hear is that lifting burns more calories than cardio. I mean, I can understand that I guess because when I lift I start to sweat faster than I do when I'm on the treadmill. But why should I have to do cardio too? Is it because weight lifting only burns more calories if you have alot of muscle (since muscle burns fat faster), so cardio would benefit me more since I don't have alot of muscle? Or is cardio only an option when you're too sore to lift?

    Just wondering why fat guys like myself get told to do cardio with no explanation. I do cardio of course but if I had it my way I would lift all day. Can someone give this noob some guidance
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  2. #2
    on the way to the Top. heytred's Avatar
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    Because if used in conjunction with lifting you can produce some pretty amazing results. Not to mention some people just enjoy doing it (me for example) or the fact that well... it's good for your heart. Cardiovascular strength and endurance = win.

    But in the end, it really comes down to personal preference. Cardio isn't a requirement.
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  3. #3
    Registered User breaktheground's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by -Volume View Post
    Firstly I'm 310 pounds.

    All I hear is that lifting burns more calories than cardio. I mean, I can understand that I guess because when I lift I start to sweat faster than I do when I'm on the treadmill. But why should I have to do cardio too? Is it because weight lifting only burns more calories if you have alot of muscle (since muscle burns fat faster), so cardio would benefit me more since I don't have alot of muscle? Or is cardio only an option when you're too sore to lift?

    Just wondering why fat guys like myself get told to do cardio with no explanation. I do cardio of course but if I had it my way I would lift all day. Can someone give this noob some guidance
    Cardio simply burns even more calories, but so does simply eating less. Some people can't NOT eat below a certain point, so they'll reach target deficit just by doing some cardio.. especially if they enjoy it (soccer, boxing, MMA, swimming). Also, it helps with cardiovascular health, which to me proves especially beneficial when lifting.
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  4. #4
    Registered User Broughman's Avatar
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    ok firstly cardio is just as important than lifting weights! Even though u burn less calories!
    Firstly my friend who is 140kg did a 45 min weight session the other day at mid to light weights! He said after the work ohh look im fine i dont feel like i even pushed myself! That night he got 3 hrs sleep because his arms were that sore and for the next 2 day he struggled! Could not even answer his phone as lifting his arms was that painful. Point is weights are great though cardio is need to burn calories to when yr recovering from anerobic (weight) exercise.

    Cardio is anything that conditions your heart and that is good for your cardiovascular system! This does not mean treadmill and bike watching an LCD TV is all u can do! Picking up a D/B and placing it down again is cardio!

    Interval cardio training (Quick bursts of intensity) is another great weigh of loosing weight

    Goodluck!
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  5. #5
    Brutal skin thinning igglesphan's Avatar
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    If you hate cardio, then don't do it. In terms of body composition, you can accomplish the same thing by just eating less. So for optimum body composition, cardio is NOT need while lifting IS needed. I do NO cardio... I'd rather be lazy, sit on the couch and simply eat less.
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  6. #6
    Monster to Beast cyco85's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by igglesphan View Post
    If you hate cardio, then don't do it. In terms of body composition, you can accomplish the same thing by just eating less. So for optimum body composition, cardio is NOT need while lifting IS needed. I do NO cardio... I'd rather be lazy, sit on the couch and simply eat less.
    ^^^ I'm with this guy, a lot of people disagree though.
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  7. #7
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    comes down to what tools you use to create a caloric deficit. for me I always lifted weights in my previous attempts to lose weight.... I told myself the same thing, muscles burn more fat than cardio so I will just get big... and I have struggled with my weight all of my life.

    broscience engage:

    I was never ever successful in long term loss or even significant loss (40lbs in like 4 months was my previous record). because realistically (newbie gains aside) you can only pack on 5lbs (10lbs if genetically gifted or new) of muscle a year.
    so yes muscles will burn more calories at rest and raise your metabolism allowing you a bigger buffer to lose weight while being able to eat slightly more... however.

    if you are a big guy like I was/am you put your heart into your cardio as well as lifting and the fat will melt faster than anything. (8 months 120lbs) Diet is paramount though, you have to count calories and be honest with yourself as well as eat the correct foods and get enough protein.

    keep in mind this is just a speed issue, cardio will create a larger deficit to add to your weight training and your eating less so you will lose faster (and if you are getting enough protein and lifting heavy you should maintain muscle too)

    if you are content in taking 2-3 years but getting an amazing muscle bound body when you are done, weight lift heavy and intensely, eat correctly and measure with calipers for true progress.

    if you want to get fit and lose fat asap and then work on building muscle, cardio it up.
    that is what I am doing... I lift heavy and my weight lifting power has increased yet still have lost a lot of weight but at the same time I feel like I should have built more muscle.
    honestly though, I am never satisfied, no matter what I would have done (or am doing) I will always be my biggest critic, I am always going to say something like "I would have been in much better shape if I had done this or that" etc

    find what WORKS for you, and be CONSISTENT, a lot of people will swear by never doing cardio, some will say just eating less and no working out works for them, others just want to lift... do what works for you but if you aren't getting the results you want. re-evaluate.

    proof? (at least works for me)

    this was me in January 2010 (this year, 8 months ago) at ~350lbs, 50 inch waist and xxl shirt :P



    and this is me now (August 26th) 230lbs, 34 inch waist and L shirt. ( I can squeeze into 32 jeans if I try :P )



    could I have better body composition? sure, do I feel insanely better having dropped the equivalent of another person worth of fat in just 8 months? DAMN straight.
    Last edited by Mrredundant; 08-27-2010 at 04:33 AM.
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  8. #8
    [300 Spartan Royal King] BlackHeart.au's Avatar
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    Lol, if cardio wasn't nesesary for weightloss, why is cardio a main source of weightloss on the biggest loser? It is essential on off days. The more cardio = Stronger lung capacity = capibility to lift heavier weights = more muscle = faster matabolism.

    So yes it is very important for optimal results.

    Goodluck

    Hope this helps.
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  9. #9
    Brutal skin thinning igglesphan's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BlackHeart.au View Post
    Lol, if cardio wasn't nesesary for weightloss, why is cardio a main source of weightloss on the biggest loser? It is essential on off days. The more cardio = Stronger lung capacity = capibility to lift heavier weights = more muscle = faster matabolism.

    So yes it is very important for optimal results.

    Goodluck

    Hope this helps.
    So much fail in this post!

    We are speaking in terms of fat loss, not weight loss. If you want to talk about how to lose *weight* for a weigh-in like the biggest loser, then the loss of water weight is essential... but that does nothing for FAT loss.

    stronger lung capacity = capability to lift heavier weights????? wut????

    More muscle to increase your metabolism???

    Stick around and do some reading here... you have a lot to learn.
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  10. #10
    Registered User CRP4321's Avatar
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    I'm 295 (was 305) and for me Cardio helps keep my heart rate up (110-135 bpm) after doing weights which is supposed to keep your metabolism going. My bike says I lose 250 cal per 30 minutes (1/2 pound a week if done everyday).

    I do 30 min of weights(5X a week) followed by 30 min cardio(7X a week) plus a healthy diet and I'm getting 2+ lbs a week in lose and my legs and arms are starting to show some muscle too so I'm happy on both fronts.
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  11. #11
    Registered User amazongb's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by igglesphan View Post
    So much fail in this post!

    We are speaking in terms of fat loss, not weight loss. If you want to talk about how to lose *weight* for a weigh-in like the biggest loser, then the loss of water weight is essential... but that does nothing for FAT loss.

    stronger lung capacity = capability to lift heavier weights????? wut????

    More muscle to increase your metabolism???

    Stick around and do some reading here... you have a lot to learn.
    First, Biggest Loser is media trying to help people "get healthy".. so, it would be hard to convey the "health" message without cardio, which most doctors will tell you is essential to overall health - plus the show would boring as hell without watching people suffer on the treadmills ..lol..

    If I had a choice between weights or cardio, I'd choose weights, no question. That said, for overall optimum fitness, I add cardio.. I like to have good cardio so that doing sports that require it (5k's, mud runs etc) isn't such a strain.. but agree, it's not necessary for good body composition or fat loss...
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  12. #12
    Registered User amazongb's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Mrredundant View Post
    comes down to what tools you use to create a caloric deficit. for me I always lifted weights in my previous attempts to lose weight.... I told myself the same thing, muscles burn more fat than cardio so I will just get big... and I have struggled with my weight all of my life.

    broscience engage:

    I was never ever successful in long term loss or even significant loss (40lbs in like 4 months was my previous record). because realistically (newbie gains aside) you can only pack on 5lbs (10lbs if genetically gifted or new) of muscle a year.
    so yes muscles will burn more calories at rest and raise your metabolism allowing you a bigger buffer to lose weight while being able to eat slightly more... however.

    if you are a big guy like I was/am you put your heart into your cardio as well as lifting and the fat will melt faster than anything. (8 months 120lbs) Diet is paramount though, you have to count calories and be honest with yourself as well as eat the correct foods and get enough protein.

    keep in mind this is just a speed issue, cardio will create a larger deficit to add to your weight training and your eating less so you will lose faster (and if you are getting enough protein and lifting heavy you should maintain muscle too)

    if you are content in taking 2-3 years but getting an amazing muscle bound body when you are done, weight lift heavy and intensely, eat correctly and measure with calipers for true progress.

    if you want to get fit and lose fat asap and then work on building muscle, cardio it up.
    that is what I am doing... I lift heavy and my weight lifting power has increased yet still have lost a lot of weight but at the same time I feel like I should have built more muscle.
    honestly though, I am never satisfied, no matter what I would have done (or am doing) I will always be my biggest critic, I am always going to say something like "I would have been in much better shape if I had done this or that" etc

    find what WORKS for you, and be CONSISTENT, a lot of people will swear by never doing cardio, some will say just eating less and no working out works for them, others just want to lift... do what works for you but if you aren't getting the results you want. re-evaluate.

    proof? (at least works for me)

    this was me in January 2010 (this year, 8 months ago) at ~350lbs, 50 inch waist and xxl shirt :P



    and this is me now (August 26th) 230lbs, 34 inch waist and L shirt. ( I can squeeze into 32 jeans if I try :P )



    could I have better body composition? sure, do I feel insanely better having dropped the equivalent of another person worth of fat in just 8 months? DAMN straight.
    Not to hijack.. but you've made killer progress, nice work!!
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  13. #13
    Vidi Vici Veni Rectify's Avatar
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    It's not neccessary, if you're only wanting to gain as much mass as possible. But i personally want to be fit and have some decent endurance too. When i've got cardio in my routine i feel better and lighter/faster on my feet and don't tire as easily. More energetic, etc.

    Personal preference, i can't say i *enjoy* it, but the effort is worth the payoff in how it affects me mentally/physically, imo. Without it, i just feel like a slow, lazy sack of crap. Even just walking up the stairs, haha. It depends on your goals, mine is all round fitness along with gaining lean mass and just being/feeling healthier. Not to just simply gain mass and ignore every other factor.
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  14. #14
    Brutal skin thinning igglesphan's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Rectify View Post
    It's not neccessary, if you're only wanting to gain as much mass as possible. But i personally want to be fit and have some decent endurance too. When i've got cardio in my routine i feel better and lighter/faster on my feet and don't tire as easily. More energetic, etc.

    Personal preference, i can't say i *enjoy* it, but the effort is worth the payoff in how it affects me mentally/physically, imo. Without it, i just feel like a slow, lazy sack of crap. Even just walking up the stairs, haha. It depends on your goals, mine is all round fitness along with gaining lean mass and just being/feeling healthier. Not to just simply gain mass and ignore every other factor.
    As you mentioned, cardio has many benefits.... it just doesn't burn more fat on a cut than simply eating less.
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  15. #15
    Work. Learn. Win. Dexter3000's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by heytred View Post
    Because if used in conjunction with lifting you can produce some pretty amazing results. Not to mention some people just enjoy doing it (me for example) or the fact that well... it's good for your heart. Cardiovascular strength and endurance = win.

    But in the end, it really comes down to personal preference. Cardio isn't a requirement.
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  16. #16
    Registered User Ash16's Avatar
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    Fat people are fat because they have exactly that mind set.. 'why do i have to do this?'.. 'how can i get around doing cardio and get thin at the same time'.. you ask a ripped fitness instructor if they like cardio and ill bet most will same they love running or swimming or hiking or what ever.. you have to change your mind before you can change your body.
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  17. #17
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    Originally Posted by Ash16 View Post
    Fat people are fat because they have exactly that mind set.. 'why do i have to do this?'.. 'how can i get around doing cardio and get thin at the same time'.. you ask a ripped fitness instructor if they like cardio and ill bet most will same they love running or swimming or hiking or what ever.. you have to change your mind before you can change your body.
    For me it started with "I have to do it in order to achieve my goal" and now its "let's go run for an hour because I enjoy it and it makes me feel good". So the fat guy mentality can change, you just have to push through it and make it your own.
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    Originally Posted by igglesphan View Post
    As you mentioned, cardio has many benefits.... it just doesn't burn more fat on a cut than simply eating less.
    True, i just don't see why anybody wouldn't want those benefits. As i said, i feel much better when i'm doing cardio 2+ times a week. I like feeling active, i held the lazy ''i'll just eat less'' mentality for too many years and i just don't see a positive side to it anymore. I want to be more proactive, even if it means putting in more effort with cardio rather than just skipping a meal a day.

    The guy who mentioned the fat guy mentality is right, it's the same with any new form of exercise. It starts off as torturous effort that you need to push yourself mentally and physically into doing, then after a while you improve and start to actually enjoy it. That's how it is with me anyway, whether we're talking about weights or cardio.

    But, different strokes for different folks.
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    i wouldn't go as far to say weight lifting burns more calories than cardio actually. Unless your doing some sort of circuit training your probably not burning as much as you think you are.
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  20. #20
    Registered User ejthomp's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ash16 View Post
    Fat people are fat because they have exactly that mind set.. 'why do i have to do this?'.. 'how can i get around doing cardio and get thin at the same time'.. you ask a ripped fitness instructor if they like cardio and ill bet most will same they love running or swimming or hiking or what ever.. you have to change your mind before you can change your body.
    Great observation!

    "Do I have too?" versus "Can I" versus "I need to" versus "I want to"

    Changing the mindset from being forced to do something against your will to wanting to do something because you know it is good for you.

    The same goes for eating right... "Do I have to eat broccoli/asparagus/tuna/xxxx?" "Can I eat/drink McDonalds, soda, doughnuts?"

    Work on the mind...along with the body!

    You don't HAVE to do anything. You WANT TO DO IT because you know it is right.
    A diet isn't punishment. A diet is a way to reward your body with the wholesome, nutritious food that it needs. Your body composition is a direct reflection of what you put in your mouth.
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  21. #21
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    Originally Posted by bking10 View Post
    i wouldn't go as far to say weight lifting burns more calories than cardio actually. Unless your doing some sort of circuit training your probably not burning as much as you think you are.
    What do you think burns more? 30 minutes of lifting or 45 minutes - 1 hour of cardio? I would like to know where the whole "lifting burns more caloriez" theory came from, even though I believe it's true I personally can't lift for 1 hour straight on ANY body part, maybe not even on full body work outs and realistically probably only put in 25-30 minutes of lifting at the gym befor I'm done and ready to do 30-40 minutes of cardio. Which do you think is burning more calories for me?

    Originally Posted by Mrredundant View Post
    comes down to what tools you use to create a caloric deficit. for me I always lifted weights in my previous attempts to lose weight.... I told myself the same thing, muscles burn more fat than cardio so I will just get big... and I have struggled with my weight all of my life.

    broscience engage:

    I was never ever successful in long term loss or even significant loss (40lbs in like 4 months was my previous record). because realistically (newbie gains aside) you can only pack on 5lbs (10lbs if genetically gifted or new) of muscle a year.
    so yes muscles will burn more calories at rest and raise your metabolism allowing you a bigger buffer to lose weight while being able to eat slightly more... however.

    if you are a big guy like I was/am you put your heart into your cardio as well as lifting and the fat will melt faster than anything. (8 months 120lbs) Diet is paramount though, you have to count calories and be honest with yourself as well as eat the correct foods and get enough protein.

    keep in mind this is just a speed issue, cardio will create a larger deficit to add to your weight training and your eating less so you will lose faster (and if you are getting enough protein and lifting heavy you should maintain muscle too)

    if you are content in taking 2-3 years but getting an amazing muscle bound body when you are done, weight lift heavy and intensely, eat correctly and measure with calipers for true progress.

    if you want to get fit and lose fat asap and then work on building muscle, cardio it up.
    that is what I am doing... I lift heavy and my weight lifting power has increased yet still have lost a lot of weight but at the same time I feel like I should have built more muscle.
    honestly though, I am never satisfied, no matter what I would have done (or am doing) I will always be my biggest critic, I am always going to say something like "I would have been in much better shape if I had done this or that" etc

    find what WORKS for you, and be CONSISTENT, a lot of people will swear by never doing cardio, some will say just eating less and no working out works for them, others just want to lift... do what works for you but if you aren't getting the results you want. re-evaluate.

    proof? (at least works for me)

    this was me in January 2010 (this year, 8 months ago) at ~350lbs, 50 inch waist and xxl shirt :P



    and this is me now (August 26th) 230lbs, 34 inch waist and L shirt. ( I can squeeze into 32 jeans if I try :P )



    could I have better body composition? sure, do I feel insanely better having dropped the equivalent of another person worth of fat in just 8 months? DAMN straight.
    That was ****ing inspiring thank you man
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  22. #22
    Singularity is near koatliki's Avatar
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    I am not sure I quite I understand why no one even challenged the premise of this thread...

    Lifting weights burns more calories? On days when I do my power workout and lift very heavy (1-5 reps and long rest times between sets) I honestly don't feel like I burn a lot of calories: CNS gets really tired maybe, but 10 min cardio breaks more sweat than 1 hour power workout (unless I do squats/deadlifts or something)

    I think an average one hour lifting session burns less calories than people think.
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  23. #23
    Registered User Mihkelk's Avatar
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    I do cardio, 6-7 times a week, depends how my body tells me, if it's tired, I take a rest day, but that happens rarely, I run for 30-45 minutes a day, some days when I feel very energetic, I go twice, in the morning and in the evening. It's done wonders for me, when I started I couldnt even run for 1.5km. Now I do 10km easily. At first, when I started, it felt like "OH MY GOD THIS IS SUCH BS I CAN'T DO IT!" but I KEPT PUSHING THROUGH, now, 3-4 months later, I LOVE to go running. Makes me energetic, and I feel so good after the run. Besides, there are so many more benefits to it than simply just getting a bigger caloric deficit. Cardio FTW!
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    Originally Posted by koatliki View Post
    I am not sure I quite I understand why no one even challenged the premise of this thread...

    Lifting weights burns more calories? On days when I do my power workout and lift very heavy (1-5 reps and long rest times between sets) I honestly don't feel like I burn a lot of calories: CNS gets really tired maybe, but 10 min cardio breaks more sweat than 1 hour power workout (unless I do squats/deadlifts or something)

    I think an average one hour lifting session burns less calories than people think.
    ^^^This

    Really surprised this hadnt been brought up yet. That hour i'm on the treadmill running a 10k burns around 700 calories. I don't know of any weightlifting session that I've ever burned 700 calories.

    Even just walking at 4.5mph on an incline should burn 500 calories, which should still be more than you would burn in a lifting workout.

    Maybe i'm wrong, but I dont think so.
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  25. #25
    Brutal skin thinning igglesphan's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by koatliki View Post
    I am not sure I quite I understand why no one even challenged the premise of this thread...

    Lifting weights burns more calories? On days when I do my power workout and lift very heavy (1-5 reps and long rest times between sets) I honestly don't feel like I burn a lot of calories: CNS gets really tired maybe, but 10 min cardio breaks more sweat than 1 hour power workout (unless I do squats/deadlifts or something)

    I think an average one hour lifting session burns less calories than people think.
    Agreed... intense cardio will burn far more calories than a heavy lifting session. I don't even take into consideration the calories I burn lifting.
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  26. #26
    Registered User ejthomp's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by -Volume View Post

    .......What do you think burns more? 30 minutes of lifting or 45 minutes - 1 hour of cardio?.......
    It all comes down to intensity. I see people in the weight room that are there for an hour and probably burn 100 calories. I can walk out of the weight room after 30 minutes completely drained physically and mentally. Same goes for cardio... I go to a one hour spin class... in an hour I can drench my shirt and put a pool of sweat under my bike... then look over at the fatass next to me that has put in the same amount of time, but you can't even tell they were there.

    Do whatever you want....just DO IT HARD! If you are going to choose one over the other, always choose lifting!
    A diet isn't punishment. A diet is a way to reward your body with the wholesome, nutritious food that it needs. Your body composition is a direct reflection of what you put in your mouth.
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  27. #27
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    Originally Posted by Mrredundant View Post
    comes down to what tools you use to create a caloric deficit. for me I always lifted weights in my previous attempts to lose weight.... I told myself the same thing, muscles burn more fat than cardio so I will just get big... and I have struggled with my weight all of my life.

    broscience engage:

    I was never ever successful in long term loss or even significant loss (40lbs in like 4 months was my previous record). because realistically (newbie gains aside) you can only pack on 5lbs (10lbs if genetically gifted or new) of muscle a year.
    so yes muscles will burn more calories at rest and raise your metabolism allowing you a bigger buffer to lose weight while being able to eat slightly more... however.

    if you are a big guy like I was/am you put your heart into your cardio as well as lifting and the fat will melt faster than anything. (8 months 120lbs) Diet is paramount though, you have to count calories and be honest with yourself as well as eat the correct foods and get enough protein.

    keep in mind this is just a speed issue, cardio will create a larger deficit to add to your weight training and your eating less so you will lose faster (and if you are getting enough protein and lifting heavy you should maintain muscle too)

    if you are content in taking 2-3 years but getting an amazing muscle bound body when you are done, weight lift heavy and intensely, eat correctly and measure with calipers for true progress.

    if you want to get fit and lose fat asap and then work on building muscle, cardio it up.
    that is what I am doing... I lift heavy and my weight lifting power has increased yet still have lost a lot of weight but at the same time I feel like I should have built more muscle.
    honestly though, I am never satisfied, no matter what I would have done (or am doing) I will always be my biggest critic, I am always going to say something like "I would have been in much better shape if I had done this or that" etc

    find what WORKS for you, and be CONSISTENT, a lot of people will swear by never doing cardio, some will say just eating less and no working out works for them, others just want to lift... do what works for you but if you aren't getting the results you want. re-evaluate.

    proof? (at least works for me)
    Dude. Simply amazing. I am looking to find a happy medium of letting the fat melt off and maintaining the muscle I have. Outstanding work bro.
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  28. #28
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    You likely burn less during the actual workout, but unless you've done HIIT cardio, the "afterburn" effect of a good weight lifting session will be far superior to an hour of LISS, IMO.

    Also, as far as real world effects, when you're lifting you're actively building up, ENSURING that you'll look good when you reach your goal, while running burns calories but can have the opposite effect.

    Edit: This is the obligatory disclaimer: Don't get me wrong, I do plenty of cardio when I can fit it around lifting, and consider it a part of my cutting routine.
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