Is strength training or cardio training more effective for weight loss?

Mr. Donovan Green
Athletic Training
Training with cardio is great to build your cardiovascular strength. However, strength training rules when it comes to losing weight and also increasing cardiovascular strength. The main goal when it comes to losing weight is to burn more calories than you consume each day. Lifting weights will challenge your muscles and force the body to use energy, which means more calories will be used and burned.
Fat and muscles cannot co-exist and muscles will always beat fat. All you have to do is let them work by picking up some iron and getting to work. Your body will burn a substantial amount of energy and you will lose weight and lean out in no time, along with a proper diet of course. One of the most effective ways to lift weights is circuit training. This simply means moving from one station to the next with no rest time in between.
A quick example would be:
  • Push ups
  • Dumbell arm curls
  • Dumbell squats
  • Dumbell shoulder press
Do each move for a toal of 30 seconds and repeat 3 times total.
Keep in mind this is only a sample. Make certain to get your doctor's permission before attempting this specific routine.

Strength and cardio training are two legs of a three legged stool--we need both. The third leg of this weight loss stool is diet.

To lose weight we need to burn more calories than are consumed. When we restrict our calories, our bodies respond by slowing or cooling our metabolic fires. Movement, staying active demand they stay hot. The more active we are throughout the day the more calories we burn. Cardio Training and its prolonged movement is great for stoking those fires during a workout—and it is good for our heart. Most of us however, cannot, should not, have the time to, or desire to, run all day. Our muscles being more metabolically active, even while resting, help us here. They stoke our fires throughout the day. This is where the strength training leg adds its support. Strength Training helps by maintaining and building muscle. The more lean tissue we have the hotter our metabolic fires will be and the more calories we burn.

Strength training plus cardio training is the most advantageous way to lose fat. Why? Because cardio burns off a lot of calories during the activity, while weight training burns loads of calories while you're engaged in it and keeps the fat burning after your workout ends. Studies show that weight loss boosts by over 56% when cardio and weight exercises are united, as opposed to cardiovascular exercise alone.

How? Strength training helps you build muscle, and muscle tissue burns more energy (calories) than fat tissue, even when you're sitting on the couch. So by growing your body's muscle composition with strength/weight training, your body will burn more energy faster, even when you're not working out, because your metabolism is running much higher.

The most straight-forward answer to the question is that both strength training and cardio training are effective for weight loss when combined TOGETHER in a program specifically designed for weight loss.

In other words, strength training is good for weight loss. And so is cardio training. But neither type of training is going to help you reach your weight loss goals by itself. However, combine the two, and add in a good nutrition plan designed for you and your specific goals, and you have a sure recipe for success.


The best way to lose weight would be a mix of both cardio and strength training. To get most of your training you can use interval training when you do cardio and circuit training when you do strength. Interval training is basically increase and decrease the intensity of your cardio workout for periods of time in the same session, determined by your level of fitness. When doing strength circuit training you can choose 10 to 12 exercises that work major muscles and do 2 to 3 circuits, the number of circuits you can do will also depend on your fitness level.

Both strength training and cardio training can be effective for weight loss and weight management. With strength training, and the increase in muscle you will burn more calories at rest. While high intensity cardiovascular exercises like running, spinning, etc. burn more overall calories, its low-intensity cardiovascular exercise like walking that burns more fat.

Now, with that said, the truth is 80% of weight loss is based on nutrition. No amount of cardiovascular nor strength training exercise can substitute for poor nutrition. For optimal results, it is best to combine portion control and proper nutrition with strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular exercises.

For the most effective weight loss regimen, both cardio training and strength training need to be performed. Weight loss is all about calorie balance (energy in VS energy out). In order to lose weight you must expend more calories than you are taking in. This defecit is what causes the body to burn its fat stores, causing a reduction in weight.

Most people perform only cardio training when trying to lose weight be cause they are under the misconception that strength training will bulk them up. This is untrue unless you are training strictly for hypertrophy (increases in muscle mass). Small increases in muscle mass should be a goal of someone trying to lose weight because muscle is more metabolically active than fat. Meaning, muscle burns more calories than fat.

Adhering to a properly designed workout program that includes strength training followed by cardio training is going to elicit the quickest results. Think of your body as an uncooked burger patty. When you cook the patty (ie. strength train and cardio) you 'melt' off the fat and are left with lean meat (muscle).

In all honesty, individuals with a weight loss goal should be focusing more on favorably changing body composition (fat mass VS lean mass). If you are losing weight but aren't doing any strength training then it is likely some of that weight loss is a result of a decrease in lean muscle mass. Performing a strength training regimen will prevent this lean mass loss, increase caloric burn and aid the body in losing fat mass only.

Dr. Mike Clark, DPT
Moving more and eating less is the most effective strategy for long term weight loss. I recommend that you incorporate both cardio and strength training into your exercise plan. Strength training will help you build more strength and muscle. This will allow you to burn more calories at rest

For optimum weight loss you should engage in both cardio and strength training activities, but the biggest factor in any weight loss program will always be your diet. If you want to lose weight, you need to make sure that you are burning more calories than you are taking in on a daily basis. Online diet trackers like you see here on Sharecare are a great way to keep your daily calories and energy expenditure under control. These programs will automatically take into account how many calories you should be consuming for your goals (weight loss, weight maintenance, or weigh gain) and take into account any physical activity you enter into them as well. 

The bottom line is that no matter how hard you train, you will never be able to out-train a bad diet. Try to be active for at least 30 minutes most days of the week and get that diet under control because that is the number one factor that will determine what you weigh. 

Eat right, train smart, and have fun!

I have to say that a combination of strength training and cardio training are effective for weight loss. In any given week, cardiorespiratory activity will 'burn' the fuel that you've consumed, presently. Strength training, or exercise with added resistance, increases muscle mass, which in turn 'burns' those consumed calories as well as stored.

Strength training is more effective then cardio for weight loss. Building muscle burns fat. Period. When you break down muscle tissue in the gym, your muscles require energy to when you leave the gym to repair itself. As long as you are following a proper nutritional plan, your muscles will pull that energy from your fat stores. Making you burn more calories while at rest. Cardio work burns calories while performing the cardio exercise, but doesn't continue burning energy when you leave the gym. You want to be able to burn more calories while at rest. Strength training does that. 

Jeremy Jones

Ideally, you want a good combination of strength training and cardio. But if you are crunched for time, and you are looking for the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to weight loss, I would utilize circuit-style strength training. Here's why... both strength training and cardio are effective at burning calories during the workout, but ONLY strength training can significantly increase your resting metabolic rate by adding additional muscle onto your frame. Since adding even a little lean mass (muscle) can increase the calories your body burns even at rest, circuit-style strength training can literally turn your body into a more efficient fat burning machine! Even though traditional cardio is a great way to burn calories, it doesn't have the additional benefit of adding lean mass and increasing your calories burned at rest on a daily basis.

Both strength training and cardio training can be and should be effectively used together to lose weight. Circuit training has proven to be a great way to burn calories while improving strength endurance. With cardio mixed into the circuit and performed at different intervals the body’s metabolism will be elevated after exercise. Performing a circuit at high intensity will increase the EPOC or excess post exercise oxygen consumption. This will in effect have your body burning more calories after the exercise than before, and is vital in working towards weight loss.

Muscle= metabolism. Cardio will immediately burn more calories, but the more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn around the clock. For best results try a combination of both cardio and strength training. 
Both forms of training complement the other. Strength training allows the user to create muscle size and strength, the benefit in this is that muscle burns more calories at rest. In combination with low to moderate intensity cardiovascular work, body fat is more efficiently used for fuel for the workouts and subsequently a change in body composition. Be aware that muscle takes up less space than fat, yet weighs more than fat, therefore numbers on the scale can be deceptive.

Your priority is strength training. A full body strength training program will help you to burn more calories in a 24 hour period as well as build lean muscle. If you have more time in your schedule adding an interval style cardio session would be your next step!

Both are effective for weight loss when done together! Cardio is great for burning calories and strengthening your heart. Weight training is great to create a good muscle tone. The more muscle you have the more calories your body burns at rest. So that means a good muscle tone will help you burn more calories even when sitting down! Having a good sound program of both cardio and weight training combined with eating well the weight will start coming off!  You will feel better and have more energy! We all want that!

They are both important elements for weight loss. You need the cardio for helping to get rid of the stored fat and to get your heart and lungs conditioned to help your metabolism get into fat burning. The strength training you need to build lean muscle mass. The more lean muscle mass you have the more fat burning capability you have. You also need the right nutrition and the right supplementation. You also if you want to get on the right track and see results and keep getting results, you should get the help of fitness professional.

The more lean body mass an individual has the more calories they will burn every day. So, if you weigh the exact same as your friend, but you have more lean body mass, then you will naturally burn more calories than your friend does. Your best bet for weight loss and continued weight management once you get to your goal is strength training. Strength training will allow you to build lean body mass.

My recommendations are:

  1. Strength training at least twice a week to maintain your lean body mass
  2. Strength training three times a week to stimulate your lean body mass even more, especially important if you have a sedentary job.
  3. Move, move and move with daily activities (clean the house, water the plants, do the laundry, walk to your friend’s house, dance in the morning before you hop in the shower, take the steps at work, go on a power walk at lunch, or the boring but safe routine of going to the gym and walking on a treadmill)
  4. Find a hobby that involves your body and mine. (horseback riding, tennis, bowling, coed soccer team, painting, dancing on the weekend with friends, volunteer to help a cause instead of sitting on the couch)
  5. Check out my nutrition videos on my website. In order to really feel and look your best, you should train your body to eat balanced and healthy meals.

I find that they have a symbiotic relationship. While the cardio will provide more proximal results (they will help you lose weight soon), strength training adds lean body mass which increases your body's BMR and allows you to burn more calories just living your normal life.

A great way to blend the two is to do a weight training circuit. Moving from exercise to exercise with little rest helps keep the heart rate elevated which helps you burn more calories. One famous "circuit" would be a Tabata circuit, alternating 20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest.

The only effective weight loss program creates caloric deficit. You have to burn more calories than you take in. Typically cardiovascular training will burn more calories in a training session however strength training over time will increase lean body mass which will increase your calorie burn over time. So of the two you need both. However, if you just want to make it easy on yourself cut your intake of calories. This is the most effective and efficient program for weight loss. Combine this with a good cardiovascular program and strength program and you will build a machine that keeps weight off for the long haul.

Both cardio and weight training can and should be a part of your weight loss training program. Circuit-style resistance training burns virtually the same amount of calories as an equal amount of time spent walking at a fast pace. Although it may not burn as much as aerobic exercise, weight training has the advantage over cardio by building lean muscle mass which increases  metabolism, thereby helping you burn fat long after your workout is over. 

The key to weight loss is energy balance. In other words, you need to burn more calories than you eat. For effective weight loss, the general recommendation is to exercise enough to burn a minimum of 1,250 calories per week, eventually working up to approximately 2,000 per week. So, whatever activity you enjoy the most and gets you moving enough to burn those calories is great; because you have to “Move It to Lose It”! 

Andrea Metcalf

Weight loss is based on a simple method: calories in and calories out. The amount of calories you burn during your workout can be equally the same depending on the intensity of your cardio and the rest between sets of your strength training. As a woman in her forties, and anyone who is nearing midlife, you will find it harder to keep muscle mass, the active tissue that revs your metabolism, harder to maintain. 

That's why I recommend a combination of both cardio and strength training on a regular basis.

The challenge of weight loss is complex yet simple. Moreover, the answer to the question is complex yet simple. The answer is strength training. Yes, strength training. Ironically the majority would claim "cardio." Justifiably and based on exercise science strength training builds lean muscle which burns more calories over time while leaning out the body.

Moreover, programming has evolved over the years. Nowadays fitness experts better understand the dynamic intrinsic system of weight loss. With that said, anyone can tweak a traditional strength training program into a weight loss program. The how is called interval training or high intensity interval training which is comprised is of a mix of light and heavy loads with diversity and very little rest in order to obtain a maximum calorie burning workout. Mahalo!

Actually the combination of both cardio and strength training is most effective.  Cardio training provides an opportunity to burn many calories quickly. 

But, when you are building muscle you are increasing your metabolism.  The more muscle you have the more calories you burn every minute of the day.

The best method for weight loss is a combination of both strength training and cardio training.

The answer is yes. I say that because you really need both components. Cardio training will get your heart rate up and help you burn calories, but the resistance training will add fat free mass (muscle) and lower your body fat percentage. For every pound of muscle you add you will burn an additional 50 calories per day. Add 5 lbs of muscle and that is an extra 500 calories a day you will be burning.
Aerobic exercise is a great way to lose weight in addtion to making sure that you consume fewer calories than you burn.  Adding resistance training to your exercise regimen is an added bonus.  The more muscle you add, the more calories you burn.  As Pamela mentioned above, for every 5 lbs of muscle you add, you burn an extra 500 calories per day even when you are at rest. 

It is very important that you monitor your caloric intake as well.  As you increase your activity level, your appetite may also increase.  By monitoring your caloric intake, you can ensure that you consume fewer calories than you burn, which is the only way to actually lose weight.  The more muscle you have, the more calories you can consume because your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is higher.

The most important number you should know when it comes to losing weight is your resting metabolic rate (RMR). The RMR is basically how many calories your body will burn while in a resting state, an example of this state is sleeping. You can find a location to get your RMR tested, you can use existing mathematical formulas, or you can use a product like an Exerspy to get your caloric burn calculated.  Once this number is identified, you need to add up the number of calories burned throughout your activity and exercise taking place during the day. Once these numbers are ascertained, you add them together with your RMR to get your total caloric burn.

A combination of both is ideal. While cardio exercises your heart and helps you burn calories, the weight training will help increase lean muscle in the body and lower body fat. The lean muscle will continue to expend energy and burn calories even after you've stopped moving. Add resistance training/weight training to your workout just 2-3 times per week and you'll begin to feel and notice a difference!

Of course both are essential for weight loss.  If you are looking for a time efficient way to do both, then you might consider circuit training.  Circuit training is a series of resistance training exercises performed one after the other with minimal rest. Minimal rest is the key.  Keep your heart rate up, keep your body moving.  Typically you would do the circuit 2-3 times.  This form of training has shown to be:

  • Just as effective as traditional forms of cardio in improving fitness levels. 
  • produce a greater level of calories burned post exercise and greater levels of strength.
  • Produced near-identical calories burned for the same given time span when compared with walking at a fast pace. 

After a few weeks from training like this, you can progress by adding traditional cardio in between supersets or in between circuits (before you start you next round).  This a great way to get your heart rate up (burn calories) AND increase lean muscle mass for more effective weight loss.

I am going to take it a step further and say that nutrition and the monitoring your calories is even more important.  Weight loss is not hard.  If you take in less calories than you burn you will lose fat you will lose fat, if you take in more calories than you burn you will gain fat.

Weight training has many many benefits and one is helping to increase your RMR (resting metabolic rate) and a higher RMR means your body will naturally burn more calories throughout the day.  Also weight training will cause your body to expend more calories, cardio helps to expend a certain amount of calories as well.  This results along with other activity a total number of calories burned throughout the day.  

Now, if you take in less calories than you have burned you will lose weight.  This needs to be monitored and logged.  The key is to figure out how many calories your body burns (RMR + activity, weight training and cardio) and then be about 500 calories under this on the average per day to lose a 1 lb of weight per week.

Wendy Batts

Both forms are important for successful weight loss.  To lose weight, the amount of calories we eat from food needs to be less than the amount of calories we burn throughout the day.  Both strength training and cardio are beneficial forms of exercise that you can do to assist in burning more calories.  Our muscle tissue is very metabolically active, meaning that it requires a lot of energy (calories) for our bodies to maintain.  Therefore, strength training is extremely important because it forces the body to maintain muscle tissue even if our caloric intake is reduced; cardio training does not necessarily force the body to do this.  However, cardio training helps burn large amounts of calories per session and keep the heart and lungs healthy, making the body more efficient in delivering energy and oxygen to the muscles (which aids in burning fat).  So really, cardio and strength training are like peanut butter and jelly – they are good alone, but much better when matched together!

Research shows that the most successful way to lose weight is a combination of diet and exercise.  Weight loss is really a simple math equation.  You have to end your day in negative caloric balance.  A good rule of thumb is to make a 500 calorie reduction per day to allow for a one or two pound weight loss per week.  It is also highly recommended that you learn you eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day.  This teaches your body to use energy quickly, rather than store it as fat to be used at a later time.

When starting out, think of this process as a lifestyle change.  The old adage slow and steady wins the race certainly applies here.  Diets that promote significant and fast weight loss typically fail, resulting in regaining all, most, or even more weight.  By slowly making positive changes to the way you eat and developing the habit of physical activity most or all days of the week, you safely allow your body to adapt.  This progressive adaptation also promotes confidence and awareness of self that maintains motivation much longer.

In addition to calorie reduction, exercise is important to maintain and maybe even develop lean mass.  Exercise also helps to increase metabolism and allow your body to become a more efficient energy system.  When faced with the decision as to what time of day to exercise, the research is quite clear that there are significant benefits to getting your workout done in the morning.  Those who exercise in the morning are often more efficient, in a better mood, less drowsy, more creative, and sleep better at the end of the day.

Some studies show that the weight you lose from dieting alone is 75% fat and 25% muscle. You want to lose as little muscle as possible to keep your metabolism elevated. Exercising regularly with strength training can prevent the muscle loss associated with dieting and can keep that metabolism running strong!  Exercise slows digestion and keeps you feeling full longer. It also helps maintain normalized blood glucose levels so you feel less hungry.

The best way to maximize weight loss is to combine strength training, and cardio training together. Both training methods are important parts of long-term consistant weight loss.

Both activities are effective for weight loss dependent on the strategies utilized. In order for weight loss to occur the individual must be in a caloric deficit, and both activities offer calorie burning. 
Which is more effective is determined by the individual’s threshold capacities. If an individual has high thresholds aerobically and structurally weight training done in circuit fashion could burn more calories minute for minute compared to traditional cardiovascular activities. If done in a multi planar fashion, varying starting positions, varying speeds and resistance weight training would also offers less wear and tear on specific joints as compared to cardio.

However, if the individual's thresholds for intense training are at a minimum, traditional cardio can be done for longer durations and thus burn more calories. When discussing weight loss it becomes a question of calories in versus calories out. 

Jessica Smith
When it comes to exercising for weight loss, one of the key factors to seeing results is calorie burning.

While cardio training is definitely a great way to burn calories, it won’t help give your body much shape or definition. And traditional weight training alone may not be enough to help you create the caloric deficit you need to lose weight.
As a female, I prefer to use a method of cardio interval sculpting personally, and with many of my female clients who are trying to lose weight. The American Council on Exercise suggests that high repetition, light weight training (done to fatigue in under 90 seconds), can produce the same results as less repetitions using heavier resistance loads. The idea behind this type of training is to blend weight training and cardio exercise in order to double the metabolic and weight loss benefits, and includes cardio, sculpting, abs and flexibility work for a well-rounded training session.

In addition, I also recommend incorporating as much “lifestyle activity” as possible throughout the day in addition to your workouts. If you have a desk job, stand up as often as you can, walk around the office, take the stairs, etc. Even small little changes can add up over the course of a week.

And while you can burn a lot of calories during your exercise session, if you are sedentary the remainder of your day, or if you overcompensate for your workout by eating a little more, it won’t help tip the scales in the right direction.

Finally, weight loss has a lot to do with what (and how much) you are eating, so be sure to follow a well-balanced routine that incorporates along with a healthy diet in the right calorie range for best weight loss results.

I always tell my clients that cardio strengthens the heart and the lungs while weight training increases muscle mass which leads to a better metabolism. Remember that muscle burns more calories than fat so you want to increase your muscular composure. With cardio workouts there is seldom enough resistance to cause your muscles to go through the breakdown and repair cycle (the cycle needed to increase musculature) as your muscles do when they are challenged by weights/resistance. Still cardio workouts are needed to supplement your weight training because it increases your oxygen intake and the circulation of that oxygen and other nutrients to muscles and tissues of the body that need them when under stress. I do my heavier cardio days on days between weight training; however even on days that I perform weight/resistance training I perform cardio for a good 15-20 minutes after I lift. I know what you're thinking, "after, why after, I'm usually too tired after I lift to do cardio?" Well guess what folks; it's called working out not hanging out. And there's a good reason for after, if you perform cardio first your body will use up a lot of the carbohydrates that you've taken in during the day to fuel itself and then you go lift; the problem now is that your main source of energy for lifting should be carbohydrates because your heart rate usually doesn't get high enough to get into a fat storage but your carbs are gone because you used them to do cardio first. So by lifting first you fuel the lift with your carbohydrates then go do cardio for 20 minutes and get the heart rate high enough to burn fat. Secondly you want to perform cardio after resistance training because it helps get rid of harmful free radicals that have been created with the weight training and will also help with lessening the soreness and tightness that occurs because of lactic acid build up. 

The main difference is that cardio burns calories while you're performing the cardio workout and shortly after you're done. Weight training, on the other hand, burns calories while working out (not as much as cardio) but continues to burn for hours after the lift. And as muscle mass increases your resting metabolic rate (fat burning when not working out) increases as well due to resistance training.  

Brian Floyd

Strength training and cardio work best or most effective together for weight loss. Cardio is the most time efficient way to burn a lot of calories. However strength training is going to help with burning calories outside of the gym. That is because when you do strength training you are breaking down the muscle fibers which need to rebuild. By having a proper nutrition you will be able to rebuild that muscle during the rest of your day. This increase caloric burn and increases your metabolism. So when you are sitting at your job and driving those kids to school and practice you are going to be burning a lot more calories than just doing cardio alone.

For weight loss, you need a balance of cardio and strength training. I have found using body weight exercises works best for weight loss. Body weight exercises can be used to combine both strength training and cardio.

The most effective is Both. You want to do cardio to help burn fat and strength training builds more muscle which helps you burn more fat as well. They go hand in hand and nutrition is a big part of effective weight loss too. There is no quick fix or fast solution only hard work and consistency.

BOTH are important. It's important to keep your body moving on a regular basis. Strength training is very important to keep your bones healthy as well as burn more calories at rest. While you are resting your muscles are repairing and that burns more calories than simply resting from getting your heart rate up for a short time. However, cardio sessions will burn fat fast leading to weight loss as long as you are not consuming more calories than you burn in a 24 hour period. Exercise WILL Increase your appetite so it's important for you to monitor what goes IN as well as what is coming out, calorie- wise. 

Both are great for weight loss. Cardio training increases your body’s ability to process oxygen (good) and while strength training also allows your body to increase its ability to process oxygen it additionally enhances many other factors such as strength, muscle mass, and muscular coordination (control). All of these factors make your body a more effective (calorie burning) machine.

Both forms of training are very effective for weight loss. Weight loss will occur anytime you burn more calories than you consume. Therefore, both cardio and strength training are an essential component of any successful weight loss program. Cardio type exercise will help burn calories while strength training helps to produce lean muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have the more calories you will burn. Proper nutrition is also a critical part of any successful weight loss plan. You can do as much cardio and strength training as you want but in the end if you are still fueling your body with poor nutritional choices you will not see any weight loss.

A combination of strength training and cardio exercise is ideal for weight, i.e. fat, loss. Strength training produces a much longer “after burn” than cardio, meaning your metabolism will stay elevated for a much longer time than after a session of cardio. Strength training improves the quality of muscle you have as well, and muscle is much more metabolically active (consumes energy) than fat thereby raising your BMR. I suggest one of two things for weight loss, a solid weight training session followed by a session of cardio (ideally interval training), or a butt kicking high intensity weight training session with brief rest periods, keeping the heart rate elevated the entire session. If you could ONLY do one of the two, I would recommend strength training over solely cardio. Of course, neither would produce results without an effective nutritional program, which outweighs (pun intended) them both for effectiveness!

This is a tricky question. Both strength training and cardio are important in a weight loss regimen. Cardio helps to create a caloric deficit, you will certainly burn more calories during a 30 minute cardio session than you would during 30 minutes of weight training. However, weight training helps to build lean muscle...which in turn revs your metabolism, by creating more active tissue, helping you more in long term success. While it’s ideal to have a combination of both cardio and weight training for a successful training program, I suppose if there is only time for one I say pick up the weights. Any program should have sustainability. Doing cardio alone will help you to initially lose weight, but it’s the weight training that will transform your physique from flabby to fabulous.

Holly Brown
It's important to do both. Cardio is great for burninig up calories right away and strength training builds muscle to help keep your metabolism high even when you are not exercising.
A combination of the two is the best option. Cardio gets the heart rate up and gets the blood flowing. It is great for calorie burn. Strength builds muscle and muscle burns fat therefore with the combination of strength and cardio training, you burn twice as many calories and lose weight quicker provided that you are keeping to a healthy diet.

A balance of both is essential for optimum weight loss, if you think of your body like a furnace the coal would be the lean muscle mass and the fire would symbolize your cardio  together they create longer lasting heat that burns more efficiently. So what this means is you will burn body fat more efficiently by doing both not to mention you will also be strengthening your bones, tendon, ligaments and muscles.

Strength training will help you develop muscle. Muscle will use more calories through out the day. Cardio will burn excess calories during the time spent doing the activity.

Both forms of training are desirable for weight loss and should be utilized.

Personally I think that a combination of both is most beneficial for weight loss. My favorite is circuit training, it saves time and incorporates both strength training and cardio in the same workout, it’s a win-win! 

So what is a circuit? A circuit workout is a series of exercises, let's say weight training exercises for an example. For the purpose in answering this question, one would perform between 8-10 different exercises which  are performed with minimal rest in between exercises (this enables the cardio effect keeping the heart rate elevated), upon completion of the circuit, the participant rests for 1-3 minutes, and then repeats the circuit 1-2 more times through with a rest period in between each circuit. 

I recently read an article stating that the University of Maine did research on the circuit-style workout and found that the amount of fat burned in a circuit workout is equivalent to running 10 MPH in the same amount of time. I would much rather do weight training for 45 minutes than run 10 MPH! 

A combination of the two is the best way to lose weight, of course along with eating healthy. We tend to go crazy on cardio as a nation, but mixing in weights or even bodyweight training will help build lean muscle. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories your body burns even at rest. Mix it up!

The truth is you need both. If you choose to do one without doing the other, it'll take you twice as long to get to where you want to be. Doing one and not doing the other will make your overall fitness incomplete. Strength training will help you build that lean muscle that will burn more calories that will make you lose body fat that will make tone. Cardio will improve your cardiovascular endurance that will burn those extra calories that will help you lose weight. So, get with your trainer and get going.

I think the question should focus more on fat loss. At least for me strength training always put more weight on the scale. Remember muscle outweighs fat! But understand that was what I was trying to achieve; weight gain along with fat loss. Weight loss rely mostly on what and how much you consume and then how active you are. You can lose weight doing cardio but what good is all the loss when your muscles can't fire up in time to fight, flight, or move quickly. If you mix strength training and cardio together with a balanced diet that promotes weight loss you can expect to lose a pound and 1/2 per week. This is because your muscles are still gaining but fat loss is also happening, and your caloric intake is lower. To answer the question you have to have the balance of everything.



Many people ward off of strength training when trying to lose weight, with the fear of "bulking up". In fact, strength training will aid in the weight loss process and even speed it up. You will not bulk up unless you are lifting very heavy loads. Using body weight training or light weight/high reps will increase lean muscle mass. That lean muscle mass will, in turn, burn more calories post-workout and at rest then your body would otherwise. The key is to incorporate both cardio and strength into your fitness routine. Begin with a light cardio warm-up, followed by your strength training and then cardio session. And don't forget to clean up your eating! Stay persistent and the results will not disappoint.

Gigi Gregory

Both are effective for weight loss and in combination they work well together. I use both with my clients and have great success. I use a circuit training method incorporating cardio exercises with weight training which works well for weight loss and building endurance. Building muscle is the best way to successful and attainable weight loss and weight maintenance along with a healthy diet.

Both are important for weight loss.  The strength training will build muscle, which will increase your metabolism, and the cardio will burn calories.  For those with limited time to commit to exercise, I recommend doing your strength training in a circuit fashion so that you get the most bang for your exercise minutes.
Both are the most effective.  You can't have one without the other.  Each one of these has its own benefits.  Weight training will help increase your BMR(Basal Metoblic Rate) which in turn helps you burn more calories to lose weight.  Also cardio helps burn more calories quicker than just weight training alone and helps increase your endurance, lower blood pressure and resting heart rate.  Also you can combine the two if you are short on time for workouts.  Just remember to lose weight it is all a numbers game.  You have to burn more calories than you take in. 
The answer is, honestly, a beautiful combination of both. Doing cardiovascular training can burn more calories because there is very little rest, but resistance training helps to create tone, helps to put lines in your body, and also increases your caloric burn after your workout. Also, your body does not know whether you are running on a treadmill, rowing a boat, climbing a mountain, or lifting weights, so resistance training in circuit can be done as a form of cardio.  And, let’s not forget the importance of diet as a weight loss component.

Both strength training and cardio are beneficial forms of exercise that one can do to assist in burning more calories throughout the day. Losing weight is all about managing calories intake and calories use. To lose weight the amount of calories we take in from food needs to be less than the amount of calories we burn on a daily basis. Muscle tissue is very metabolically active meaning that it requires a lot of energy (calories) to maintain. Therefore, strength training is extremely important because it forces the body to maintain muscle tissue even if our caloric intake is reduced; cardio training does not necessarily force the body to do this.

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