Incorporating cardio training into your workout routine is paramount for maintaining optimal health and achieving fitness goals. However, the timing of when you engage in cardio exercises should be strategically varied depending on the desired outcomes of your resistance training.
In this blog post, we will explore the three types of resistance training, namely strength, hypertrophy, and endurance, and delve into the benefits of properly timing your cardio workouts to enhance your training effectiveness.
The Power of Cardio
Doing cardio in your workout routine is essential for your health. Some of the health benefits associated with regular cardio training include:
- Improved Cardiovascular Health: Cardio exercises, such as running, cycling, or swimming, increase your heart rate and strengthen your heart muscle. Regular cardio training can improve blood circulation, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
- Weight Management and Fat Loss: Cardio workouts are effective in burning calories, which can aid in weight management and fat loss. Engaging in regular cardio exercises helps create a calorie deficit, leading to a reduction in body weight and fat percentage.
- Increased Endurance and Stamina: Cardio training enhances your endurance capacity by improving oxygen utilization and energy efficiency. Over time, you’ll find yourself better equipped to handle prolonged physical activities and experience reduced fatigue during daily tasks.
- Enhanced Mood and Mental Well-being: Cardiovascular exercise stimulates the release of endorphins, also known as “feel-good” hormones, which can boost mood, reduce stress, and alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. Regular cardio workouts contribute to improved mental well-being and overall psychological health.
- Stronger Immune System: Engaging in moderate-intensity cardio exercises can bolster your immune system. Regular cardio training helps to improve circulation, increase the production of white blood cells, and enhance the body’s ability to fight off infections and illnesses.
- Improved Lung Function: Cardiovascular exercises involve deep breathing, which helps strengthen and expand lung capacity. Regular cardio training can enhance lung function, increasing oxygen uptake and delivery to the muscles and organs.
- Better Sleep Quality: Engaging in regular cardio workouts can promote better sleep patterns and improve the quality of your rest. Physical exertion during cardio exercises helps to regulate sleep hormones, reduce insomnia symptoms, and promote more restful and rejuvenating sleep.
Understanding the Three Types of Resistance Training
Strength training focuses on building raw power and involves performing exercises with high resistance and low repetitions, typically ranging from 1 to 6 repetition maximum (rep max). The goal is to induce total muscle fatigue, enabling muscle tissue to adapt and grow stronger.
Hypertrophy training aims to increase muscle size and involves moderate resistance combined with moderate repetitions, usually ranging from 6 to 12 rep max. This approach also emphasizes achieving total muscle fatigue to stimulate muscle growth.
Endurance training targets enhancing muscular endurance and involves using lighter resistance with high repetitions, exceeding 12 reps. The primary objective is to improve the ability of muscles to sustain contractions over extended periods.
The Optimal Timing for Cardio and Strength Training
When preparing for a strength training session, engaging in a prolonged bout of cardio training beforehand may not be the most effective approach. Studies suggest that performing cardio exercises after strength training allows for greater gains in strength and power. This sequence ensures that your muscles are not pre-fatigued, enabling you to exert maximal effort during resistance training exercises.
Maximizing Endurance Training with Early Cardio
If your training focus is on endurance, incorporating cardio training at the beginning of your workout routine proves beneficial. By initiating your session with a longer duration of cardio exercises, you effectively prime your cardiovascular system, preparing it for the subsequent endurance training. This approach allows for optimal performance during endurance exercises and helps develop the capacity to sustain prolonged physical activity.
Strategic timing of cardio training in your workout routine can significantly impact the effectiveness of your resistance training. By considering the specific goals of your training—whether it be strength, hypertrophy, or endurance—you can tailor the sequence of your cardio workouts to maximize your results.
Remember, for strength training, prioritize cardio exercises after your resistance training session, while for endurance training, initiating your routine with cardio yields optimal outcomes. By employing these timing strategies, you can unlock the full potential of your workouts and propel yourself closer to achieving your fitness objectives.