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I got into weight lifting because my best friend is into it. My doctor also said it's better than cardio, burns more calories, and builds muscle. I don't want to be ripped, just healthy.

Is it truly better than cardio?
Why not do both? Lifting one day, cardio next, rinse and repeat. Or if you truly enjoy one and dislike the other, just stick to the one you like. That way, you will actually stick to it throughout your life.

If you're female, there's a 99% chance that you won't ever end up looking any more muscular than a typical female fitness model, no matter how much lifting you do. If a typical female fitness model is too ripped for you, then might be better to focus on cardio, and do moderate lifting to minimize muscle loss over time.
Dominatrix LaDeaux's avatar

Vampire

It's much better than cardio. Reverse pyramid training three times a week on alternating days will do it for you, but you may like to do some cardio warm ups for five minutes beforehand.

It takes a long time for a chick to get ripped, so don't worry too much about it. Subtle abs are quite attractive anyway. 3nodding
Krateor's avatar

Distinct Browser

I believe they are equally important, along with stretching.
weightlifting helps to strengthen your muscles and bones, and does burn kcal.
cardio helps to strengthen your vascular system and endurance, and burns lots of kcal because you are having to supply not only blood to the area
but also have to run the TCA cycle due to anaerobic (oxygen-deficit) conditions.
stretching is also important because it adds to flexibility and strengthens the tendons around those muscles and bones you are using for weight lifting and cardio.

I wouldn't recommend doing cardio and weights on the same day though,
so that you can give those body parts a rest.
Man, I wish I could get bulky as fast as the other girls around seem to think.... Would love to look like a female version of the old school bodybuilders or some of the leaner powerlifters.

Anyways, cardio and weight lifting are both very important for keeping a body healthy. However, the way I think it, weight lifting is "better" in that you can put cardio in weight lifting but not weight lifting in cardio.

By that I mean you can use complexes, a series of different kinds of weight bearing exercises done in a row without rest with lighter weights than you would usually use, in the weight room. Something like picking up a barbell from ground, do 8 bent-over rows, then power clean it and do 8 front squats, and then do 8 overhead presses before putting the barbell carefully back on the floor and take a break for 1-2 minutes.

Oh yes, the repetitions I put up are adjustable, do as many as you feel comfortable doing, but if you can do 12 reps or more like that, then add a little more weight to the barbell.

And of course, if you're more comfortable with dumbbells or kettleballs, by all means switch the barbell for one of those!

Not only will your muscles feel some serious burn from this, but your heart will be jumping like crazy, trust me. 3nodding
Hey Hey Beautiful
I got into weight lifting because my best friend is into it. My doctor also said it's better than cardio, burns more calories, and builds muscle. I don't want to be ripped, just healthy.

Is it truly better than cardio?


It's true that it burns more calories than cardio (cardio only burns calories while you are doing it, as opposed to weights which increases metabolism for the next 48 hours). However you'll still want to do cardio for your heart health.
weight lifting might help you get "in shape" as in not a circle ... even though a circle is a shape...

weight lifting usually does not increase your endurance or heart health

either way, in you simply desire to lose weight, you must work out for at least 20min before you start burning away at fat. Thus longer work outs would be more effective
I think a combination of both is best. You need cardio for a healthy heart and for endurance. But it is true that the more muscle you have, the more calories are burned at rest.
Caffeine Shadow's avatar

Ruthless Phantom

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cardio is far better because lifting only targets certain muscles while cardio like swimming gets everything at once
Ryuto Nagi's avatar

Friendly Seeker

Caffeine Shadow
cardio is far better because lifting only targets certain muscles while cardio like swimming gets everything at once
Agreed but an intense workout on a large muscle group like the Back and the Legs burns just as much calories as a full body cardio like swimming would.
And I could be wrong but anaerobic exercise (like resistance) has the benefit of burning calories long after the exercise was finished depending on the intensity of the workout.
That's why bodybuilders have to eat slow digesting protein like casein before sleep so the body could feed off of that and not their muscle while asleep.
Hello Hey Hey Beautiful

I agree with keiiii on this one - chances are if you're female you wont 'get big' lifting weights. For a start, women have 7-8 times less testosterone than men. Since testosterone is a muscle building hormone, it's much harder for women to get that bulky look.

Also, getting big requires a calorie surplus. In other words, you have to eat much more than you burn over time. So if you're lifting weights but not eating much more than you burn, you'll just look more toned and loose fat instead.

In my opinion, lifting weights is way more effective than cardio if you want to get 'in shape', lose fat, and look toned. From a calorie point of view, the total amount of calories you burn each day from cardio is negligible when compared to fidgeting, walking to work, burning energy at work, toe tapping etc (scientists call this non-exercise activity thermogenesis).

The difference between an hour long run and one hour of intense weight training in the gym might not be much in terms of calories burned.

BUT

If you don't pump iron and you eat less than you burn, for every pound of weight you drop, you'll tend to loose at least half in the form of muscle - which means that it becomes harder to lose fat and look toned.

A recent BBC documentary did not have many good things to say about cardio... Check it out, it's called 'The Truth About Exercise'. One of the ideas they push is that three minutes of intense workouts a week can burn more fat than longer workouts.

Also, I'm writing a post on this topic that you can check out on my blog when it's up.

Cheers
Rohan the Fat Loss Boss
If you're worried about buffing up and instead just want to lose weight the best thing to do while lifting weights is to decrease the amount you lift and instead increase the number of counts and sets you do.

For example if your maximum is lifting 20kgs, then lift 10-15kgs instead while doing 16-20 counts in 4 sets instead of 10-12 counts.
Suiko's avatar

Agile Rogue

You should lift weights if you want to add muscle

You should lift weights if you want to lose fat
Yehia
If you're worried about buffing up and instead just want to lose weight the best thing to do while lifting weights is to decrease the amount you lift and instead increase the number of counts and sets you do.

For example if your maximum is lifting 20kgs, then lift 10-15kgs instead while doing 16-20 counts in 4 sets instead of 10-12 counts.


Girls can't bulk up unless they powerlift like crazy for years on end, eat way more than their recommended daily calories, and use steroids. You can lose weight (fat weight, of course) by lifting massively heavy and get a sexy, sculpted body without looking bulky. So this low weight/high rep thing isn't really effective. Though I will say 10-15 kgs is still heavy for most women, so I can't exactly discredit the 10-15 kgs, but those who feed into the bulking up myth use 3-lbs and aim for the 50+ reps for the most part.
I pondered on this question for awhile. My friend said you can't get big and be a runner. B.S. Do what you enjoy. Weight lift light weight to your desire of being strong, then do your normal cardio of your choice. I use to lift heavy, didn't enjoy it. also run long distances love it. Do both heck it'll just make you that much healthier. your talking to a guy who use to be chubby.

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