Thursday, November 6, 2008

Run first or lift first?

The next few articles will look into the different goals & objectives and how they figure on your workout card. Hope you find it enlightening!

Reached there. Now hop onto the Treadmill first or finish off your weights routine first? Well, the sequence can make a huge difference.

The basic way that the body supplies energy for both the activities is quite different. Without getting too technical, remember that any Cardio activity uses the ‘aerobic’ pathway to generate energy, which burns fats reserves as fuel. Weight training uses the anaerobic pathways to generate energy which mainly target carbohydrates (glucose) as fuel.

Hold on now – its not that simple! The twist in the story is that, firstly, the body is designed to use carbohydrates reserves first and only then fats reserves, within reason. And secondly, these fuels for anaerobic pathways last only for less than 10-15 minutes, when used continuously! The body then switches over to fat reserves as the primary fuel, for all ‘prolonged and continuous’ activities.

These facts can be used to your advantage as –
o If you are targeting to lose fat/weight, choose to weight train first – it effectively burns out the carbohydrate reserves – so by the time you hop onto the treadmill, there are very little anaerobic fuels left, and fats reserves are targeted earlier.
o But, if you are targeting to build mass, ignore the above option. Heavy training requires anaerobic fuels primarily, and by doing a prolonged cardio activity (> 30 – 40 min), there is effectively very less reserve left.
o But do remember that after any weight training activity, any cardio activity for 10-15 minutes really helps get the blood pumping and wash off any muscle soreness.

However, every body is different, and what may work wonders on one, may not work on another! So, don’t take these as laws, but try them out and see if it works for you!

No comments: