Recently i’ve been on a discovery all on my own. I’ve read several articles over the past few weeks that…i’m beginning to disagree with. My fitness goals are to be strong, lean, and sexy. All year long, i’m not training for any competitions or anything like that. I started weight training because cardio is boring, and not something I can stick with, let alone keep up with because it’s too simple. Too easy. Weight training is the only way to be toned, and strong. And for every extra pound of muscle you put on, is an extra 50 or so calories burned at rest per hour. Amazing, right? Makes you wonder why more people aren’t starting to lift heavy things.
All these articles that i’ve read have been very conflicting…and some slightly offensive. In short i’ve read a lot along the lines of this: Women HAVE to do cardio/Women MUST mainly do cardio (HUGE NO btw), You can’t lose weight and gain muscle at the same time, Cardio VS Weight Training, You don’t need to do Cardio. Honestly I was trying to research how much cardio should one do, if not weekly, daily. If you don’t know if you weight train but do a ton of cardio, you’re hurting your gains (muscle) by over doing cardio. But if you just do cardio you’re going to be flimsy and jiggly no matter how low your body fat percentage is.
Since I couldn’t get a straight answer I’m currently on a self discovery mission to find the answer for myself, which I will later make a long post about my findings. Putting on muscle for me is hard, and takes a lot of time. But I know athletes/body builders/fitness models implement cardio into their workout as well. I’m having 1 cardio day a week where I’ll do the stair climber for 40-60 minutes. (Max i’ve done is 40 thus far) Then so far i’ve been doing the stair climber 10-20 minutes a day, maybe not everyday it just depends on how I feel and what not. (Always listen to your body!!) But just by making this slight change within the past week I feel different, I feel better to be honest. I feel light, I feel thin, most of all I don’t get that bloated feeling no matter what. In the process it is also working my lower abdominal muscles and that stubborn fat us ladies have in our stomach, our pouch so to say. (Stubborn because the fat lays under the muscle instead of on top ESPECIALLY if you are a woman who has had a child, why it is so difficult to get control of) Which is great, but a lot of that has to do with my posture on the stair climber.
What i’m saying is there are a lot of cheat forms people use while they’re getting their cardio on, on the stair climber specifically. You may think it’s all a lower body workout but you’re wrong. If you’re leaning on the railing, leaning over, putting your weight on any bar, you’re actually taking away from the workout and the potential to really work on your core as well. There are several articles online about poor stair climber forms if you don’t believe me. The people I see that frequently use that machine and are on it for long periods of times they almost always cheat… Unfortunately the more and more I learn about postures and forms the more I realize how many people poorly execute their workouts.
PROPER FORM (Resting hands, or in my case I rest my wrists on the bar in front of me. Do NOT put your weight on the bars.)
I used to hate the stair stepper/climber whatever you want to call it. But it really takes building up and building up your leg muscles. You hate it because it’s working your body hard and burning calories faster than if you walked or speed walked on the treadmill. Other machines or workouts that don’t make you sweat like a pig immediately. But think about it… 10 minutes, 80+ calories burnt…. how can you not. If you have no extra fat you want to lose, cardio at least helps out with your cardiovascular health. So if you’re in it to be healthy, it’s at least something to reconsider adding into your routine.
I’m going to be a bit out of town next week but i’ll be sure to post an update with how this is going for me later on! Thanks for reading! Share if you would like, SO many people are not aware of improper cardio forms….It really does make a difference.