There is a lot of talk in the fitness world regarding weight training vs cardio, diet vs exercise, and paleo vs vegan!
All of this crazy talk about which side of every fitness debate you should choose, but you should probably try to choose…
All of the above!
Weight Training or Cardio
Weight training is an excellent way to increase strength and can be used for hypertrophy. By lifting heavy weights and working out consistently over a period of time, you will achieve great results. Weight training has also been proven to actually strengthen your structural integrity and protect your joints, as long as you are lifting with proper form.
Cardio is an excellent way to increase endurance and burn fat. By running or walking, or riding a bike consistently over a period of time, you will achieve great results. I’ve also, personally, noticed that when I go for a run and do some cardio I manage to work out a lot of the stress I have. It seems that we hold a lot of tension in our bodies and some intense cardio like running could be just what you need to go the extra mile(see what I did there?).
Basically, if you choose to do both for a period of time you can be a strong person with nice, tone muscles with barely any fat and you can be as calm as can be! What’s not to love about that? I notice when I’m just lifting weights, I’m often angrier and it isn’t enough activity to keep me from gaining fat at any amount of calories. If I simply rely on cardio, I become fairly skinny and in the past it caused my joints to suffer. Here’s a picture of me running cross country my junior year:
Now we have another end of the spectrum
Diet VERSUS Exercise
Should I do a lot of exercise and train frequently or should I just drop my calories below my basal metabolic rate(BMR) and wait patiently for the fat to fall off?
You should do both! Some of us are just genetically wired for losing weight to be difficult. I know that I put on weight somewhat easily. If you drop your calories a little bit, and add some form of exercise you will lose weight and you will lose it faster. I also mentioned earlier that I experienced cardio as something that was therapeutic for me in the sense that it reduced stress. Those benefits are also great and I think that having reduced stress due to some form of exercise will help you stay positive during all the trials and tribulations associated with losing fat.
Paleo vs Vegan
This one was more of a joke! (haha) Anyways, I don’t really see the need in following any kind of fad diet unless you really believe it has some sort of profound effect on you.
If you choose not to eat meat and dairy because of ethical or dietary reasons, go vegan and be happy! If you choose the exact opposite route and want to eat bacon and cheese, go ahead cavemen!
Do what makes you happy with yourself when it comes to dieting and do your research. If it’s anything extreme just make sure you follow a doctor’s advice and get your blood work done.
But with dieting, as well as the rest of this post, just find balance. I don’t see the need to cut out anything I like as far as food goes, and neither should you. To join in on the conversation with dieting, click here.
Overall, find balance in your life with fitness and nutrition and you may become a happier, more healthy version of you.