What Comes First: Cardio or Weights?

In Uncategorized by FN Team


One of the most frequently asked questions aimed towards fitness professionals comes down to the arrangement of one’s exercises. Many people wonder when they should stretch, when they should squeeze in their cardio, and when they should get in their weightlifting. A majority of people do their cardio before their weightlifting, but is this the correct way to go about your workout routine? Many experts are actually divided on the issue, but we want to get down to the truth; when you are planning your workout at your nearby Arlington Fitness Center for a day of both cardio and weights, which should come first? A lot of people wonder if the order even matters – turns out, it very much does. It also turns out that your personal preferences matter too, as the order you do your routine should depend on the results that you desire.

If your goal is to burn fat and lose weight…

If you are wanting to focus on losing weight and burning fat, then your best option is actually to split up your days. You will want to have full energy for each of these exercises as both are necessary to lose fat at your body’s best capability. Alternate your cardio days with your strength training days to see the best results. However, if you have a day where you need to do both, or simply like to get both done on the same day, then you should do weight training first before cardio.

The more muscle that your body has, the more calories your body will burn even when you are at rest. That is why it is so important to make sure you incorporate it into your workout routines. Because building muscle is so effective for burning fat and increasing metabolic rate, your body’s energy should be given 100% to strength training before cardio training. It is still important to get your cardio in though, as it does burn more calories.

If your goal is to increase endurance and get faster…

If your goal is to get faster and gain endurance then your best bet is to engage in cardio first. Studies have found that if you do your cardio post weight training, your heart rate will be higher and you will find the cardio work out much more difficult; this will not allow you to reach your fullest potential.

If your goal is to get stronger…

If you want to build muscle and get stronger, then you should do your strength training first. The reason is that you will need all the energy you have in order to make sure you are getting in an adequate and strong workout when you are weight training. If your energy stores are depleted during your cardio workout post weight training, then you won’t have as much left for building strength.

If your goal is combined and you desire overall fitness and health…

If you just want to maintain or build overall fitness and health then it is okay to do your routines in the order that is best for you. All that matters is that you are getting in your exercise.

If you have more fitness questions or are looking for a 24-hour gym in Arlington, then come to Fitness Nation – we’ve got you covered.