Cardio vs Weights (Best Way to Burn Fat)

Check out my client Ben’s transformation where he lost a whole bunch of fat

If you’re trying to burn fat why not do it in a way that has you working smarter rather than harder.

Most people automatically assume that cardio is better for fat loss and weights are better for building muscle.

And this may be true if you compare traditional steady-state cardio to traditional weight training

but there are different forms of weight training that incorporate very effective new training techniques that may be far more beneficial for fat loss.

So If you’re the type of person that wouldn’t mind burning fat faster with less effort then stick with me through this video

because I’m going to give you a couple surprising new ways that you could lose fat way faster with both cardio and weight training models

and ill make sure that you fully understand which one is best for you and your goals

Now if you’re looking for the quick overnight fix I don’t have that for you but this is as close as you’re going to get to that magic bullet quick fix to spending less time in the gym while burning more fat from your workouts.

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So let’s start first by taking a closer look at Cardio and weight training at their core.

Traditional cardio is usually performed on a treadmill an elliptical stair climber a bike or even on a rowing machine.

When I talk about traditional cardio I’m mostly referring to steady-state long duration cardio

where you’re continuously repeating the same low to moderate intensity motions like jogging, biking, or swimming for an extended period of time.

Most of the traditional types of cardio are forms of aerobic training.

Aerobic training primarily involves using oxygen to sufficiently meet the body’s energy demands during exercise.

On the other hand traditional weight training where you lift a heavyweight load for a certain amount of reps before taking a break and then repeating for more sets,

THAT is considered anaerobic training. With anaerobic training oxygen alone cannot supply enough energy to meet the demands placed on the body

so glycogen from the muscles is primarily used to fuel the activity.

Generally speaking, you’ll burn more calories for each session of cardio than weight training for about the same amount of effort.

Minute per minute, cardio burns more calories. But does that mean that cardio is better for fat loss?

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Let’s take a closer look. For a long time, it was believed that to burn the maximum amount of fat you had to stay in what was known as the fat-burning zone

which mostly could only be maintained through aerobic cardiovascular activity.

The idea behind the fat burning zone was that you would burn a higher percentage of fat calories rather than carb calories

when you stayed at about 70 percent of your maximum heart rate.

And this made sense to most people because once an activity became too intense the pathway for energy would change to anaerobic and begin primarily burning glycogen or carbs for fuel rather than using fat oxidation.

However, it’s been proven that the fat-burning zone is a myth because both types of training aerobic and anaerobic can burn plenty of fat.

And if you burn more overall calories from a higher intensity workout like the ones I’m about to share with you,

so anything above roughly 70% of your maximum heart rate you might be burning a higher percentage of carbs,

but you’re also burning more overall calories because you’re heart rate is higher and the activity is more intense.

So even if you have a smaller percentage of fat coming from a larger overall number of calories, you can still wind up burning more fat.

This is easy to understand if I give you an example like take 50 percent of a smaller number like 500, and then take 30 percent of a larger number like 1,000.

Just because you’re burning a higher percentage of fat from lower intensity exercise like steady-state cardio, doesn’t mean that you’re burning more fat.

On top of that even though we know cardio will typically burn more calories per session than weight training,

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research has shown that you burn more calories in the hours and sometimes days following a weight training session when compared to a cardio workout.

Also, weight training will build much more muscle than cardio. Muscle is directly linked to your resting metabolism,

so if you have more muscle you will have a faster resting metabolism than if you had less muscle allowing you to burn more calories during rest over time.

So cardio takes the advantage when it comes to calories burnt minute by minute,

however, weight training has the advantage with calories burnt over time. That still leaves questions about which one is best specifically for burning fat.

Well, luckily there was a study done at Duke University that was published in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

It was conducted over the course of 8 months in which they tracked 119 overweight normally inactive volunteers while they performed either weight training,

Cardiovascular Exercise, or a combination of the two.

The research showed that the cardio group lost about 4 pounds while the resistance training group gained two.

The two pounds were attributed to lean body mass meaning they gained muscle,

however, the cardio only group lost more than 3½ pounds of fat while the lifters didn’t lose a single pound of fat.

This means in the area of fat loss the resistance training group that used weights lost.

However, when compared to the group that did both, the weights and the cardio that group had the biggest improvement in the ratio of fat to lean muscle mass.

On average they also decreased their waist circumferences, more than the cardio-only group.

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This study shows when isolating cardio and weights it seems that cardio works best for reducing fat mass and body mass.

But when you combine cardio and weights especially when you combine them in the way I’m about to show you, you get by far the best results.

The American Council on Exercise conducted a separate study on exercise sequencing that found that your heart rate is higher, by about 12 beats per minute, during your cardio workout when you’ve lifted weights beforehand.

A higher heart rate, especially by 12 beats per minute means more calories burned. This is why I’ve been telling everyone for years now to do cardio after weights,

not the other way around unless you’re using it as a warm-up. When you do cardio after weights Not only does your heart work harder causing you to burn more calories,

but you also use up your glycogen stores during your weight training workout.

Once glycogen stores are depleted your body begins to use body fat for energy at a higher rate.

The one problem with doing cardio after weights are that you wind up spending more time at the gym.

Even in the study the group that did both spent almost double the amount of time working out.

I mean It’s great that we can burn more fat by doing cardio after weights,

but what if we don’t want to spend a ton of time at the gym, and we want something that works faster.

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Remember that whole train smarter not harder thing?

Yeah, well that’s exactly where training styles like PHA are otherwise known as peripheral heart action training come into play.

Also, there are techniques like multi-joint training and high-intensity resistance training that you can incorporate to get the fattest loss from your workout.

Peripheral heart action training incorporates an element of cardio into your weight training routines by forcing your heart to work harder.

With PHA you could combine an upper body and a lower body movement and only take a break after you complete both with a heavyweight.

So you might do a barbell front squat for 10 reps and then immediately do 10 reps of standing military presses.

Then take a break. When you do the squats your heart is pumping blood to your legs,

and then when you immediately switch to the presses it has to pull all that blood right back to your upper body.

This causes your heart rate and breathing rate to skyrocket allowing you to burn more calories in less time.

You can also combine an anterior and a posterior movement. Anterior refers to the front part of your body and posterior refers to the back part.

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So you may combine a chest press with a row. Or a front squat with deadlifts.

Another thing you can do is combine each weighted exercise with a cardio exercise that concentrates on the same muscle groups.

For example, you can do 10 reps of squats followed by 45 seconds of high knees. Not only will this form of PHA make you burn way more calories from your workout,

but it’ll also challenge your muscle strength as well as endurance.

PHA itself is one form of high-intensity resistance training,

but there are many ways you can set up a quick 15-minute High-intensity resistance training routine to get the great fat-burning benefits during and after your workout.

You can move between a series of exercises using challenging weights with short or long stop, go intervals.

So for example rather than continuously jogging, the exercises are typically done at certain intervals.

Intervals like 20 seconds on 10 seconds off. Or 60 seconds on 30 seconds off or even 4 minutes on 1 off.

When done correctly you can burn much more overall body fat within just a few minutes.

Cardio and weights each have their benefits and by throwing in a couple 15-minute high-intensity resistance training sessions you can get the best of both worlds.

You’ll get the increased cardiac and lung function from the fast pace of moving from one exercise to the next.

This will help speed up weight loss, increase muscular endurance, and give you more energy throughout the day.

And then because you’re using weights you’ll be increasing lean body mass, increasing your resting metabolism, and getting stronger.

That’s it I really hope this video has helped you guys out. If you enjoyed it make sure you subscribe to my channel,

and if you’re serious about burning fat you have to understand that it’s not only about working out,

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My passion for fitness began when I was 14 years old. I naturally fell in love with training and haven’t stopped since. At 18 years I acquired my first personal training certification from ACE after which I opened my first of 3 transformation studios in 2011. I love to share my knowledge through personal training, my online courses, and youtube channel now with over 3,000,000 subscribers! I can happily say that we've helped over 15,000 people get in great shape over the years. I'm always here for my customers so if you need help don't hesitate to send your questions to

Founder // Gravity Transformation, Max Posternak