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The Buzz on Cardio and Weight Training

April 19th, 2023 | Aria Ma


What is all the buzz with cardio and weight training? Is one better than the other? What if you wanted to do both? Can you do TOO much cardio or TOO much weight training?

The answer is, well, pretty complicated!

Health experts agree that both cardio and strength training are important to maintain a high quality of life and prevent a multitude of diseases. Depending on your health and strength goals, you may be doing one more than the other. In this short article, we’ll point you in the right direction depending on your main objective and enlighten you on the buzz on cardio and weight training.

Losing Weight (cardio > weight training)

There is a large misconception and urban legend around how more weight training can lead to weight gain. After all, increasing muscle mass means increasing weight gain. However, muscle is lean tissue, thus gaining more muscles can improve your overall quality of life due to its positive metabolic benefits. Research has shown that if your main goal is to lose weight, having a workout that is more cardio heavy can be more advantageous.

When you picture cardio, are you picturing 5K marathons? Don’t fret! Cardio can be something as easy as moderate intense activity such as a 30 minute brisk walk once a day every week. It can also be more intense like running on an incline treadmill for 20 minutes thrice a week. Combined with the right weight training regimen and caloric deficiency, you have a recipe for consistent weight loss. For more information on what your new weight loss program could look like, take a look at the resources here.

Maintaining a Balanced Lifestyle (cardio ~ weight training)

Are you looking for a balanced exercise regimen? Balancing cardio and weight training is your answer. A mixture of both will help improve and promote heart and lung health, and metabolism and prevent high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and bone loss. This 2022 study published in The British Journal of Sports Medicine shows that a combination of cardio and weight training was associated with a lower risk of mortality than just practicing cardio solo. Looking to build your balanced cardio and weight training schedule? Take a look here.

Powerlifting and Bodybuilding (cardio << weight training)

Powerlifting and Bodybuilding are two monsters that completely depend on the individual. Both sports require research and goal setting to affect positive individual performance and success. Powerlifting consists of three main exercises: bench press, deadlift, and back squat. Bodybuilding consists of multiple physiques that can sway specific exercises to be performed. However, both areas are based in weight training, where powerlifting focuses on strength and bodybuilding on hypertrophy.

For our powerlifters out there, take a look at this article full of scientific articles and exercises.

For our bodybuilders, take a look here for science-backed exercises.

Aerobic Endurance Training (cardio >>> weight training)

Training for a marathon? Are you a swimmer? Do you compete in competitive jump rope? You’re looking for aerobic endurance training, which means relatively more cardio than weight training. However, there is a mix of weight training in your regimen too, but it looks very different compared to that of a strength trainer. If aerobic endurance is your goal, you’re looking at interval training with weight training that consists of high repetitions at lower weights.

Depending on what your goals are (i.e. long duration, moderate intensity vs. short duration, high intensity), your exact regimen will look vastly different. Here is a resource that will help you get started on your endurance training journey.

In the end, the buzz around cardio and weight training is more complicated than most people make it out to be. Depending on your goals, your regimen will look different to that of your friend’s or your neighbors. If you’re more endurance minded, your cardio will come before your weights. If you’re focused on strength, you will always do weights before cardio. Many studies have supported this to be the most optimal and effective way to shape a person’s training schedule based on their goals.

However, one thing is for certain: if you find yourself in our BWI or PHL location, no matter what your goals, you’ll find the equipment for both cardio and weight training before or after your flight! Take a look at our gym space and what we have to offer here. We can’t wait to see you!

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