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#1 Mistake My Female Clients Used to Make

Updated: Jul 18

Both male and female clients often struggle to know what to do in the gym. This is true for losing weight and building muscle.

With so many option, it can be challenging to put together an exercise regime you feel confident will get you to your goals.

But my female clients seem to make one specific mistake regularly. So much so I decided to dedicate this entire blog on the topic.

Ladies, stop doing cardio before weight training.

This is true if you want to build muscle, lose body fat, tone up, get healthy, start a lifestyle habit - any of it and ALL of it.

Weight loss, weight management, toning & sculpting, building lean muscle, male or female; you do cardio after weight training.

The one exception is if you need to specifically strengthen your heart. If you’re aiming to make your heart and lungs healthier, you want to do cardio first.

Does this sound familiar

Typically women start by spending anywhere from 20 - 40 minutes walking / jogging on the treadmill or some sort of cardio at the gym. I get it. You feel more comfortable and confident tucked away on a machine.

This is usually followed up with some light lifting for toning or to hit an area they would like to work on.

Ladies (and gentlemen), this is wrong. Cardio exercises may make you feel sweatier and breathing heavier, but that is not necessarily indicative of fitness progress. Just because you are doing a cardio exercise, doesn't mean you are burning body fat.

Your body uses what is convenient first. That is the food from your last meal. This is true every time you work out.

Let Your Food Build Muscle, and Your Body Fat Fuel Cardio

Use cardio exercises for what you intend it for - burning body fat.

When you do cardio first, you are not necessarily burning body fat. You are using the last meal you ate.
  • Regardless of cardio or strength training, your body grabs the quickest source of energy - and that is the food from your last meal - NOT Body Fat.

  • Once the food in your system is used, a biological process takes place that starts utilizing fat storages. Studies show this process takes about 20 - 25 minutes of aerobic exertion or exercise.

How long do you do cardio? If it's 25 minutes or less, you may never even hit the threshold to burn body fat.

Maximize Your Time & Calories - Give That Energy to Strength Training

Start your routine with a well developed strength training routine.

Strength training actually speeds your metabolism up, as it utilizes your energy sources (your food) more efficiently than cardio.

Preferably you are using challenging weight, compound movements, and getting your heart rate up each set.

Placing strength at the front of your workout you'll notice

  • you have more energy to lift

  • feel better during your workout

  • start building a healthy and muscular physique

  • lean down without hours and hours of cardio

Then, end with Cardio. This way you immediately tap into fat storages to perform those exercises and can do less of it. This win / win maximizes your time and energy, while delivering those healthy, lean results.

8 to 10 minutes of cardio at the end of your strength training can produce the equivalent fat calorie usage of a 30 - 45 minute jog.

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