Fitness
Moderators: melkor


Should I cut down on Cardio?


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I'm looking to gain lean muscle whilst still eating within my calorie range (2200)

I weigh 121 pounds and I'm 17 years old, 5 ft 6.

I do 30 min running, 20 min cross trainer and 20 min cycling. = 800+ calories burnt.

Afterwards, I do some weight training but seeing as I've lost weight and I only have some fat left in my stomach/hip/thigh area, should I cut down my cardio to only 30 min running? = 400 calories burnt.

This will give me more energy to focus on lifting as I want to develop some muscle.

What do you guys reccomend?

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http://members.rachelcosgrove.com/public/505p rint.cfm

I don't do cardio at all.  I lift weights.  Lift heavy

2200 sounds low, given your age, if you want to put on mass. I'm assuming you are female -- if you are male, 2200 would be way too low.

Might be that you need to cut down on cardio. Or you could eat more.

What's your lifting routine.

#3  
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I'm Male! :o Is it low?? That's what CC reccomends I eat so I didn't know otherwise. How much should I be eating because I find that I consume empty calories sometimes as I can't fill the 2200 calories without them.

I'll cut down to 30 min of running in that case and I'll eat more too (more healthy food).

I'm just about to head out to the gym so this is my plan:

First do 30 min cardio running (burn 400 calories)

Then I'll do various weight machines like ab crunch, pull downs, leg extension (way more) but I can't remember their names!

 

Thanks for pointing out that I'm not eating enough, I'll make sure to change that.

You should eat healthy fats to get more calories in, grass-fed beef, avocado, whole eggs, nuts, seeds Also if you want to add muscles, you should do full body lifts, bench press, squats, pullups, deadlifts, overhead press, rows

CC's tools are not meant for people under 21. Use this calculator.

With your stats, I get that you burn ~2800 if you are active for an hour a day. So your cardio already is putting you at that much, and so at 2200, you are eating at a deficit (i.e. for weight loss).

You need a better lifting routine if you want to gain muscle, and you need to eat more than you burn. Look up Starting Strength.

Original Post by moskii1:

I'm Male! :o Is it low?? That's what CC reccomends I eat so I didn't know otherwise. How much should I be eating because I find that I consume empty calories sometimes as I can't fill the 2200 calories without them.


 

Thanks for pointing out that I'm not eating enough, I'll make sure to change that.

CC calorie targets are for adults over age 25.  At 17 you are still growing and need considerably more calories than an adult, especially if you are trying to gain muscle.

Eat plenty of protein, whole grains and fruits.  Nut are a great way to get good calories too.

http://startingstrength.wikia.com/wiki/Mark_R ippetoe

Get off the machines and do real weights like smash recommended.  Look at the starting strength page for ideas on programs that use the whole body.

 

Eat more. 

I am female 52 5'6" and on days I lift I eat around 2200 calories.  You should probably be doing considerably more than that

If you are running low on energy eat more. However I would not recommend cutting out the cardio. It's really good for you and for your cardiovascular health.  Keep it but maybe cardio in the morning and lift in the afternoon or viceversa.

There are a ton of threads in the fitness forum that discuss in order to gain muscle mass you need to eat more calories than you burn.  Check 'em out.

#10  
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Wow, thank you very much for your replies/links to useful information.

According to that pie chart one of you nicely linked, I should be eating 2800 calories, how the hell do you manage that?!

So basically, just got back from the gym and I did the following:

* 30 min running = 410 calories.

I stopped then when I'd usually do cycling and cross trainer but instead lifted 11000 KG. I was going to do more but I need to speak to my instructor as she hasn't logged in all of the strength machines and restricted me to only a few :*(

Although I haven't fully cut out my cardio as I feel I can't do that! It's a part of me now, I have cut back on it for this session.

I'll now stuff my face in to try eating more than I burn.

What do you think about that guys?

It sounds like your off to a good start.

Peanut butter or other nuts are a great way to get protein, healthy fats and added calories all in one easy move. 

Don't just eat to get your calorie upped.  Eat good foods to reach your calorie goals.  

#13  
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I've had two rounds of kashew nuts so I really am fed up of them today...

What about pistachio's? I like them but I'd need to buy some first tomorrow or something.

Peanut butter sounds good too.

Thing is, to get lean muscle people restrict me to eating only certain foods, e.g no carb, high protein, low fats, blah blah but how am I supposed to eat 2500 calories if I'm watching what I eat all the time as most foods contain carbs and I can't just live on chicken breast!

Fitness is so confusing.

 

Do not cut out an entire "food group" because its bad.  Carbs are needed to fuel your workouts.  Having "sugary donuts" isn't a good choice for the carbs, however a whole grain pasta or bread ( I use ezekiel) or sweet potatoes and corn and fresh fruits and veggies are wonderful carbs. 

Fat isn't bad either unless you are constantly eating a mcdonalds every day.  Healthy fats can be found in avacados, nuts, fish.  You can have whole  milk, cheese, yogurt and post workout protein shakes.

In one workout program it says to add 1 gallon of milk a day to your diet.  I sometimes do chocolate milk post workout.

To build muscle you need to feed it. 

Add the carbs and fat. You need them both. No wonder you have a hard time eating enough; high protein deits are great for feeling full, which is good for weight loss, but not for gaining. You need a lot of protein for your muscles, but not at the expense of carbs and fat. Fruiits, veggies, fatty fish, milk and whole eggs.

 People who tell you to cut out an entire food group or "eat clean" are mostly confused and haven't got the foggiest notion what they're talking about - just ask them to define "clean", get some spiel about "only natural and unprocessed" and then watch their faces when you ask if the protein powder and fish oil capsules they're recommending can be classified as unprocessed, natural foods, and where exactly Crystal Light grows in nature.

You can have a lot of the same fun with people who claim to be doing "paleo" diets :)

 There is a decent chance you do need to cut down on the high-intensity and panting cardio if you're going for maximum muscle gain, there's a hormone called AMPK that gets activated once your cellular energy stores in the form of glycogen gets lowered through exercise. While AMPK is activated, muscle protein resynthesizes is suppressed in favor of glycogen restoration. This is an analog process, not a binary on/off switch so you don't have to cut out cardio entirely, but it's useful to dial back the intensity to where you're training in the much-misunderstood "fat-burning zone" - this lets you get your cardio in while minimizing the time muscle protein synthesis is suppressed by AMPK. 

 Since you're 17, you're at that age where you can theoretically go on the seefood diet - see food, eat food - when bulking because you're at the point in your life when you're primed for maximal muscle gain. I'd still start with approximately 500kcal/d over maintenance rather than going on a completely gonzo bulk though, because even at best you're only going to gain about 3-4 lbs of muscle a month depending on your genetics so aiming to gain 6-8 lbs a month just sets you up for later problems.

seefood diet - I love that term. I hope to be on that for as long as I possibly can

#18  
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Thank you very much for the information melkor and I so agree with you!

I'm scared though... I used to be over-weight and seeing as I've cut down to the lower end of my BMI I feel skinny and I'm proud of myself.

HOWEVER, because I'm eating like 2200 calories I keep thinking I'm going to gain fat rather than muscle..

I've just been to the gym and done cardio first for 30 mins (is this allowed?) then lifted 16000 KG afterwards.

Is this enough to make sure I'm building muscle when I'm gaining rather than fat??

OK my food today hasn't been totally healthy as I've eaten a small nutty bar and walkers crisps. Other than that, they were all healthy foods.

Thoughts?

THank you all for your continuous help in these confusing times. >_<

Original Post by moskii1: I've just been to the gym and done cardio first for 30 mins (is this allowed?) then lifted 16000 KG afterwards.

Is this enough to make sure I'm building muscle when I'm gaining rather than fat??

16000 kg is over 35000 pounds. I don't think that you are lifting 35000 lbs*, so you must mean something else, but I'm not sure what.

 

*Google tells me the heaviest deadlift is in the neighborhood of 1000lbs.

If by that the OP meant the total weight lifted during a gym session it could be true!

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