Although cardio is essential to any workout routine, there are times when it's better for you to do it so that you can obtain maximum results. Cardio after weight training is one way that you can accomplish this. Ultimately, this could end up being a lot safer for you and that is what is most important to us.
Weight training is all about form. Correct form not only helps you in the long run, but it also prevents you from having major muscle pain or even worse, hurting yourself to a great extent. Hurting yourself would ultimately land you next door at our physical therapy clinic. As much as we would love to see you over there, we would rather it be under better circumstances. :)
If you do your full cardio workout before, you will use up all of your energy then and not have a whole lot to give when you weight train afterwards, therefore compromising your form. Because you don't have a lot of energy, you may not be able to lift/squat as heavy as you would normally.
Essentially, a lot of your muscle growth comes from those last 2-3 reps that you do in the last set when you are struggling, sweating and grunting (sound familiar?). With more energy, you could easily power through that with little problem. Without the energy that you would have used up in the cardio session, you would have either A) given up or B) decreased your weights for the last set, which would not benefit you as much as the other sets with a high resistance would.
Now for women, it's a little different. Most women don't want to gain a whole lot of muscle mass, we are just looking for some definition. Ya know, a just little lift to the lower portion and a little toning to the upper. ;) So, if you are a woman and don't lift or squat with a whole lot of weight, then it's perfectly fine to get some cardio in before your weight training.
Like we said, we like to have patients next door at Triangle Therapeutics, but if the injury can be prevented in the first place, we try everything we can to educate you, like in these blogs. Stay tuned every other week for more topic discussion! Have a topic you want us to cover? Let us know in the comments!
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