I have read a lot of different things when it comes to the most effective cardio routine. I have heard from some that eating a little before you do cardio will help spare muscle. I have also heard that cardio on an empty stomach is the only way to go w...
There are basically two schools of thought when it comes to doing cardio. One method, the old school method, is to do low-moderate intensity cardio for a 45-60 minute duration on an empty stomach first thing in the morning. This absolutely works. I have used it for myself and for clients & readers for many years. There is no doubt that this is an effective method for ridding the body of excess fat. The idea being that after an 8-hour fast overnight blood sugar levels are at a bottom and allow for greater fat loss DURING the exercise. This method absolutely helps strip body fat. I have worked with literally hundreds of people personally that have had excellent results practicing this method.
New research has shown that it may be beneficial to eat a small protein/carbohydrate meal first thing in the morning before you do cardio. This new school method is designed to help stop muscle catabolism and help kick start the metabolism first thing in the morning. The first meal of the day is followed by a shorter but much more intense cardio session of 15-25 minutes. I have used both methods and I can say that they both work extremely well. Recent research supports my personal experiences by suggesting high intensity cardio may be better (or at least more convenient) for fat loss than slow go style based on total number of calories burned. A lot of people these days are switching to high intensity or high intensity intervals (HIIT) from slow go cardio with tremendous results. HIIT is definitely gaining popularity among the masses, especially considering the hectic lifestyles of todays professional. If people can get the same fat loss results in 15 minutes as they could in 45 or even 60, hell why wouldn’t they? (because its HARD!)
There will always remain arguments as to witch method is better as much of the research that has been done has been conflicting. The bottom line is, just do it. It doesn’t really matter which method you decide to go with. They both work and they both work extremely well. If you don’t have 45-60 minutes to do cardio then a 15 minute balls out HIIT session is a perfect solution. If you want to spend an extra 30-45 minutes in the gym conversing with the hottie next to you on the treadmill…do it. In the end, it really doesn’t matter, its personal preference and both methods work. All the time you spend splitting hairs over which method will work best is time wasted on other things. Don’t make it harder than it has to be and don’t get caught up in the fine details. Pick the one you think you can live with and do it, consistently. If you do this you will be pleased with your results. There is no point in stressing over which method is better. The fact that you do your cardio consistently in conjunction with a clean diet is what matters.