What are strength exercises?
They are used to strengthen muscles and increase endurance. Muscle contraction is achieved to increase anaerobic endurance, muscle strength, and increased muscle size.
It is achieved with swimming, with a routine of machines in the gym. As well as exercises using body weight that can be lizards, push-ups on a horizontal bar, among others. There is also weight lifting and exercises with elastic bands of resistance, strength on the bench, opening with dumbbells, rowing lying down and sitting.
strength exerciseForce exercises make muscle work more intense by adding weight or resistance to movement. With weights you work several muscles simultaneously and with machines one in specific.
With these exercises you can reach the maximum strength that is obtained with large weights and few repetitions. The strength-resistance is when you maintain it in a certain time, is achieved by working with little weight and many repetitions. The fast force is when you overcome a resistance with more contraction speed. You perfect it with explosive training and jumping exercises.
Flexibility exercises such as yoga can be strong if you do them quickly, increase repetitions or add weight. With this training you correct posture, increase calorie expenditure, prevent injuries and tone. It promotes sports performance, stabilizes the metabolism and strengthens the ligaments.
What are cardio exercises?
They are activities in which your heart rate and breathing increase when you use the largest muscle group repeatedly. They are high and low intensity, depending on the oxygenation capacity to burn calories.
This process occurs because the muscle must choose to use as fuel our fat reserves. The larger muscle groups are worked on and should be performed in at least 30 minutes per session on 3 to 5 days a week.
The best options for cardio are dancing, swimming, cycling, elliptical machine, jogging and skating. Research has shown that after doing cardio the body continues to burn fat because it is activated metabolism, ie you can lose weight with the body at rest after intense exercise.
High-impact exercises include those that require your feet to be off the ground at some point during training and that require you to be off the ground in order to be performed. Of particular note is the jump rope, which bears weight with its extremities against gravity. This category includes soccer that requires running behind soccer balls for several kilometers. The low impact ones keep both feet on the ground as weight lifting.
There are also those without impact, among those who qualify swimming, aerobics, cycling, but increase the rhythm and burn calories. They are good for people in rehabilitation and with arthritis. Try not to fall into the myths that clothe the cardio as performing it slow for better results.
Running before doing weights is another myth, it is the substitute for leg exercises and fasting. The biggest misconception is that it does not allow muscle development. What it does is fight insomnia, it produces endorphins decreasing stress.
It also increases the flow of blood to the brain and growth hormone, reduces the risk of cancer. At the same time it helps digestion, strengthens the immune system and delays aging.
Why you should combine strength and cardio exercises
If you only practice cardio you will put aside other needs of your body. While exercising strength guarantees muscle development, weight loss and greater flexibility. That’s why the solution is to incorporate both options into your exercise routines to have a slim, toned and healthy body. Always supported by good nutrition.
The combination of strength and cardio helps eliminate overweight faster, the result is 10 times more effective. Also, your body will develop to the maximum allowing the two types of exercise to complement each other.
Among the benefits stand out:
Improved physical appearance benefits overall health.
It favors the respiratory capacity and the resistance to certain diseases.
- Reducing fat reduces the risk of obesity and the pathologies derived from it.
- Activity increases resistance to fatigue due to the production of lactic acid and stimulates blood circulation.
- Cardio exercises lead to an increase in the elasticity of the arteries which lowers the risk of hypertension. More hormonal control produces a better mood.
- The union of exercises leads to maintain weight, increases muscle tone and bone density preventing osteoporosis.
- It also works to relieve the symptoms of diabetic patients by controlling blood sugar.
- They improve coordination and balance. In addition to this increases confidence and self-esteem.
- Metabolism becomes more efficient.
The key is to have variety, to change routines to ensure that there is no boredom and to achieve long-term success. The goal is to combine strength, cardio and stretching, from there to combine exercises that are interesting and challenging.
Order in exercise
When putting both types of exercise into practice, define your objective, because the order in which they are carried out depends on it. If you want to lose weight and you have little time, combine cardio and weights in one session to deplete glucose reserves. That’s how you burn fat.
If you want to improve your aerobic capacity the cardio is for the end because it can decrease the elasticity. The mix has an individual scope focused on your body type, sport choice and goals. So, you have to decide whether to lose weight or gain muscle, but it doesn’t mean that one will come first, ideally they will work together.
- More muscle, first weights: For muscle volume it is important that you consume energy at the beginning with weights. If you do cardio first you will be exhausted and they will not be able to meet the weight regimen correctly. It will reduce your glycogen reserve so you won’t have your full potential and you run the risk of injury.
- Less fat, first cardio: Consume the energy of the glycogen doing cardio, then you weigh so that the fat is burned and you lose weight.
- More endurance, first cardio: To improve as an athlete you need more endurance that will give you run. The weights will be a complement of the routine to gain power in the legs. Also exercise on the strength machines.
- More strength, first strength: If the goal is to strengthen the body, but stay slim, high intensity interval exercises are recommended. Apart supplement with the combination of weights.
Risks of mixing strength and cardio
In spite of all the good that the synergy of these exercises can have, there are always risks if the plan is applied incorrectly. By developing muscle strength and cardiovascular endurance capabilities simultaneously, some interference may occur.
Consequences include residual fatigue from previous training affecting the neuromuscular system. Muscle glycogen reserves are also reduced, as is overtraining. Apart from the inhibition of protein synthesis that triggers the decline of the muscle’s ability to have tension.
It is therefore advisable to distance the workouts that work the same muscle groups. For example, do not perform leg strength work and running. This will help recovery and adaptation to stimuli.
Another recommendation is to do endurance exercises in the morning and strength exercises in the afternoon. The recovery time should be at least three hours, to return to normal basal levels. You can program the exercises in different days or in different cycles.
More tips for the success of this combination
A day of rest or regenerative day after a strength session. Before training avoid high intensity exercises to avoid fatigue to get to the gym. Another alternative is to plan a morning cycling session and an afternoon gym session.
Perform the shortest force routine, between 45 minutes and one hour. Carry out with exercises that you master with series of between five and eight repetitions, rest of three and five minutes. Focus on dietary protein intake.
If you decide to do the strength and cardio sessions in a row, it is recommended that you eat carbohydrates and protein at the end of the exercise. It can be a milk drink with cereals. If you participate in marathons of more than four hours do not perform strength exercises in the next three or four days. Neither in the previous days.
As not everyone has time for each type of exercise, disciplines such as crossfit, boxing and martial arts are in fashion. An important point is that when you exercise you have the right clothes and sneakers. They should not be too tight.
Every physical activity has its benefits, but if we combine some can give us a bigger dividend. With these tips we hope that you have understood why you should combine strength and cardio exercises and ignore the myths.