I believe you may be a lifter. I also guess that deadlifts and bicep curls make most of your days and not the half marathons. Who has time for cardio anyway? Don’t you think it’s gonna chew your hard-earned muscle gain? Yes and no… it will only depend on how you do it.So, does cardio burn muscle mass?Though cardio is quite popular, one thing it never does is to burn muscles. And this is not in the sense of a regular boxing and/or running session. To say, ultra-marathons and extreme endurance sports move along their own leagues and uniqueness. And in fact, your habitual cardio might bless you with a dozen of pros if you are a lifter. For example, your insulin sensitivity will increase, you will have a nicer blood flow and maybe you will have developed stamina as a result of enhanced endurance and performance.
Better blood flow
Cardio increases the capillaries number of your body. This essentially means that you will be developing a more efficient blood flow system. And the effect of these extra capillaries are to facilitate a further transportation of nutrients and oxygen. This way, minerals will access more organs where they are needed for a main role. In addition, cardio also improves recovery and DOMs simply by guiding blood to the needy and specific muscles. For example, you have just hopped off that finishing set of squats and are now engaged on some stretches. Then it turns out that it would have been better to take a steady walk on the cross-trainer first. If you have more power for your legs, your heart will have to make sure that it pumps the oxygenated blood to your legs. This pumped nutrient dense blood will aid your damaged muscles with a quick recovery, and result in less DOMs.
You always have to encounter and deal with increased performance. The cardiovascular training will equip you with efficiency and therefore you can better handle endurance activities and
lead you to stamina boosts. With your aerobic and anaerobic base growing, you will also be improving the workload to muster.Therefore, whenever you want to rep out on any long and deep sets, then you are able to handle it. If you lack this fitness base that’s built with cardio, then fifteen reps might be a quick and much of a burn. The same also applies to the anaerobic athletes who basically ought to recover in between bouts of extreme exertion, for example football players, CrossFit fanatics and boxers.
Lower insulin sensitivity
A slightly regular cardio is also associated with improvement in blood sugar. Recent research found that the physical activities (inclusive of cardio) helps to reduce the insulin
resistance, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. And what does it mean for your muscles? It means improvement in insulin sensitivity which allows your body to process carbohydrates better.In addition, improved insulin sensitivity aids your muscles in absorption of nutrients in a much easier way. Therefore, your body can translate these improvements to count in for overall recovery, performance, and growth.Is cardio a muscle builder? Yes. It is very possible to
build muscle with cardio – it’s legit. There are many studies out here to prove this to you. One conspicuous study published in the 2014 issue of Exercise Sports Science Review had Konopka et al verifying that they and others had demonstrated that aerobic exercise is attributed to acute and chronical alteration of protein metabolism, and that induces hypertrophy of the skeletal muscle. Or, cardio influenced the size gains in short.The researchers proved also that for an effective aerobic exercise, for purposes of muscle building, you will need to do a required effort. The growth magic number laid ranges between 70 and 80% – a high intensity. It gets obvious thinking about high-intensity and hypertrophy, right? Do you know any sprinters? Pay a look at his or her legs. They are jacked, right? Cardio enhances muscle building A Mid Sweden University research notes that striding out to the track may also contribute to your size gains. Their study had ten men of age range, 25-30, who went on a 5-week training protocol. With their objective being ‘to understand how cardio affects muscle growth’, these men did 45-minutes of cycling with a single leg before performing seven reps knee extensions. It was strictly the other leg used for knee extensions, and not the cycling leg.Then, the research team took an MRI scan of each leg after it was all done, that is, the 5-week plan. They found out that both legs depicted an increase in size gains. However, the cycling leg had increased in volume by 14-17% while the non-cycling leg had only grown by 8-9%.The official statement stated that the results had suggested that the increased aerobic capacity by AE+RE was associated with a more robust increase in muscle size as compared with RE, where RE meant resistance exercise – better gains.Can you do too much cardio?Before going and tanking on the treadmill for 3 straight hours, we will need to backtrack. Yes, you can do too much cardio and it’s easy to do it. Many people’s perception linger on more performance and the better you get. So, they will either keep performing further every session of an exercise or retire earlier to a dormant life and end regretting. Or they might also topple over to overuse and succumb to injury. One of the studies confirmed this through examining body composition of ultra-marathon runners after a race. Impact of endurance races on muscle massOne study found out that at the end of a certain controlled race, athletes had lost 50% of visceral body fat averagely. And on top of that, they had also reduced the lean mass of their legs by 7%.The RSI and Injury. Yet another muscle-wrecking risk accompanying cardio, injuries have dominated much athlete’s performance. The injuries are in form of repetitive strain injury (RSI) that commonly occur in
joints (ones experiencing the excessive repetitive movement).What about overtraining the
cardio way? Exerting too much cardio into the mix makes your body be in a constant fight of recovery. Before it comes to a full circle, it will be back in the race to catch up with your every
day’s run. Overtraining sabotages your gains severely. The signs that indicate an overtraining include strength loss, constant fatigue, lack of sleep, mass muscle loss, mood swings and maybe a tanked testosterone.To what extent can you go with cardio without risks and yet gain muscles?Cardio is greatly beneficial to you and your gains. You just need a better or smart approach. Toning down your cardio to 2 or 3 sessions per week can maintain your peak condition. Again, if you hop between training sessions going for 20 to 40 minutes, it is also more
than enough. And one smart way to deal with this fear factor is by seeing cardio as something new. It will make programming and planning of your workouts much easier. Try setting different days for cardio and strength. It is very smart to set your cardio days different from strength days. For some aligning reasons, you will find most gym goers hitting the air-dyne bike either before or after their weight training days or sessions. However, this concurrent type of training is
not always constructive. It should only be done by weight-losing athletes, and for short periods. The reason is because they run the risk of chronic interference, especially when the body is overloaded by the needs of cardio and resistance training.
If you go out amongst the gym goers and ask if cardio burns muscle, they will tell you it does. We are always in two camps of either a cardio crusade or a barbell brigade. However, one gets stereotypically yoked while the other is supposedly weak and stringy. If both helps, why can’t we do both of them? Science acknowledges this, but why can’t we embrace it? Evidently,
if we adopt a sensible amount of cardio, it is very efficient for our gains.