Cardio vs. weights: Which is better?
By Kayla Hartson
Student Fitness Coordinator, Campus Recreation Department
Whether fitness is part of your daily routine or you’re new to the gym, we’ve all asked the question at some point: Should I be doing resistance training or cardio? Is one better than the other? The truth is, each type has its own benefits. Check out this table, which compares the effects of cardio and resistance training:
So which one is better?
Cardio and resistance training are different but complementary to each other. While they offer similar benefits, they each have their own specific effects on the body. It’s important to include both in your fitness routine. If you’re new to exercising, start by aiming to achieve the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) guidelines each week.
What are the exercise recommendations?
ACSM recommends that healthy adults engage in both cardio and resistance training each week. For cardio, the recommendation is 3-5 days per week of a combination of moderate and vigorous intensity exercise equaling at least 150 minutes per week (30 minutes per day). For resistance training, ACSM recommends training each major muscle group 2-3 days per week with at least 48 hours of rest between training sessions for the same muscle group. For general muscular fitness, it is recommended to train each muscle group for a total of 2-4 sets with 8-12 repetitions per set.
Follow the Student Fitness Centers Instagram page, @sfc.gcu, for workout routines and healthy lifestyle tips.