Want to strip away that stubborn outer layer of body fat? Or just want to tighten up? Maybe you want to lose 10, 20, or 30 pounds. Whatever you goal, this is how to make it happen!
Maybe you’ve considered weight training, but you’re afraid of getting too big or bulky? For the lean toned look, weight training is essential. Most ladies first instinct is to avoid weight training in fear of looking like a bodybuilder. Resistance training will tone you up and turn your body into an efficient calorie-burning machine! Check out our other post on the many benefits of strength training here. So now you’re probably wondering…which do I do first? The answer: strength first, cardio (preferably HIIT) last. And here’s why – there are three different energy sources your body utilizes for energy:
- glycolytic system
- phosphagen system
- oxidative process
Each of these sources has it’s advantages and limitations. The first two, the glycolytic and the phosphagen systems are used for intense bursts of energy! As you’d probably guess, the energy these systems produce doesn’t last long!
Phosphagen is used first, usually within a few seconds of intense activity, which is why glycogen is also used in parallel. Think phosophagen, firecracker – it produces an exceptional amount of power and energy!
Glycogen is created from carbohydrates taken from your diet and converted in your liver to use during in this energy process. This energy is the most readily available and can be accessed immediately for most intense exercises.
When you workout, your body expends energy. Think of your body as a car that has three separate gas tanks. Let’s pretend, for the sake of this analogy, that every time you start this car it has to go from 0 to 60 mph. To do this you turn your key in the ignition and immediately put your pedal to the metal. This burns through all the fuel produced by the phosphagen and glycogen systems. Now you’re crusing at 60 mph. You’re phosphagen and glycogen tanks are on empty, but not to worry this is when the oxidative gas tank kicks in to fuel your ride.
The oxidative “engine” creates fuel by drawing out stored body fat. Beginning a process that separates body fat into fatty-acids and triglycerides. These fatty-acids and triglycerides – which are common buzz words which we’ve been made to think are “unhealthy” – are actually the building blocks for glucose (carbohydrate) which supplies the “gasoline”(or energy) to your engine while you workout. Thus allowing you to burn up your stored body fat and increase your lean muscle mass!
Because your resistance training exercise has a greater energy requirement than your HIIT does, it’s ideal to perform this first so that you can give it your all! Dedicating 100% to your strength training ensures that your metabolism stays boosted for a longer period of time (during repair!) and that you gain that long lean muscle tone you’ve been working so hard for.
Following your strength and toning workout with cardio exercise will activate the (oxidative) energy process that draws stored body fat for energy during your cardio!
How perfect is that?!.. it’s exactly what we were looking for. By performing your cardio AFTER your toning workout, you will gain strength and burn fat!