Long Slow Cardio for Weight Loss
I can't believe people still use long, slow boring cardio workouts for weight loss. Every week it seems like I come across another study showing that cardio doesn't cause weight loss, or that I hear from another frustrated guy or gal who has been doing a lot of cardio and is not losing weight at all. I almost get as frustrated as they do!
The most disappointing stories are from the women doing 5 or 6 days per week of cardio for weight loss, exercising for 60 to 90 minutes at a time without losing the weight from their stomach. To them it makes no sense. How can they be doing all of this cardio and still not lose weight? The absolute worst story I have ever been told came in an email from a poor woman who was doing over 7 hours of cardio per week and out of frustration asked me if she should start doing more!
The last thing you need is more cardio when you are already doing 7 hours per week without losing weight. I'll get to what she should have been doing in a minute, but first, let's take a look at some of the most recent studies I've read about cardio for weight loss.
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The first study included both men and women, and the subjects did one hour of cardio for weight loss on six days of the week. They did this program for an entire year. That's over 300 hours of cardio. That just bores me to tears to think about it. What would you do for 300 hours on a cardio machine? You could read a lot of books in that time, but that's not how I want to spend my life. But surely, you are thinking, those folks must have lost a lot of weight using that long, slow cardio program, right?
Unfortunately, the answer is no. These men and women lost an average of only 6 pounds over the course of the entire year. That's right, they only lost 6 pounds. That's 50 hours of cardio per pound of weight loss, and that's enough to make you want to throw in the towel on cardio already. It just won't help you lose weight if it is that ineffective.
But in the second study, there were some more positive results, although there was also a little cardio horror story in this weight loss study as well. A study from the UK showed that subjects lost quite a few pounds in a 12-week cardio study, with one gentleman losing 30 pounds in just 12 weeks. But here is the bad news. A small group of subjects actually gained weight after they went on the cardio program. And the researchers found the culprit was that they started to eat more after doing cardio. In fact, they ate an average of 300 extra calories per day. That not only wiped out the benefits of the cardio, but made their weight gain even worse! They would have been better off not exercising at all!
Finally, two recent studies compared long, slow cardio for weight loss against interval training and high-intensity training. Of the two other exercise forms, the interval training is your best bet for weight loss and burning belly fat, because it takes less workout time to get results. High-intensity cardio, meaning the maximum cardio intensity you can maintain for about 30 minutes, will help you burn belly fat, but interval training can get you the same or better results in only 20 minutes.
So if you want to use long, slow cardio for weight loss, you should re-think that decision and use belly fat burning interval training instead.
|WOMEN: Click here to discover the truth about cardio for fat loss, and why the two components of short, burst exercise workouts have been scientifically proven to better for fat loss and losing your belly fat.
MEN: Click here to uncover the secrets of short workout you can do to build muscle and burn fat at the same time, all while getting in and out of the gym in under 45 minutes only 3 times per week, so that you can get on to more important things in your life.
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