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Anyone do Cardio as Part of their Routine?


Another debated topic from my reading is to whether cardio is recommended in a weights weekly routine. I'm not talking about a 5 minute warmup before your workout, but perhaps 30 minutes on ''off'' days? Does anyone incorporate cardio then? If so, what type, duration, intensity...?


I suppose it depends on your goals?


Well, gaining lean muscle mass!


You should probably just do some reading on here as this has been covered before.


If your goal is to gain and you are eating enough to still do so while doing cardio then there is absolutely no problem with doing cardio. I do around 20-30 mins when I do cardio. I believe lengthy sessions are quite a bit more catabolic.


So is that steady-state? Or intensive intervals? On off days from weights?


I used to to cardio once a week but stopped because it interfered with my recovery. If you do it, just make sure you compensate with extra calories.


I feel better when I've been doing cardio consistently.

It's not much, maybe 25 minutes of bike riding at a pace my dog can keep up for, but 3-4x a week of that has made a noticeable difference to me and hasn't interfered with my packing on weight.


Uh-huh. What did you do, run 20 miles every leg-day ? :wink:


man at this point i am so into the whole 'human blast furnace' thing of DC eating that i just couldnt imagine being in a mass phase without consistent cardio.

Eat a shit ton of food and do a bunch of cardio.. and lift heavy ass weight. works every time.


yeah, it depends on your food. For a gaining program i would use short [20-50m] sprints and/or hurdle jumping. things that help trigger motor units and ideally build muscle.

wall climbing is a great one too. gets lots of grip and pulls in.



15 - 20 minutes (steady state)
4 - 5 times per week


I prefer to run outside 2-3 times per week or jump rope...


Yep, used to do a ton, but have cut back, since I'm trying to gain as much muscle as possible to not turn into stick-man while recovering from rotator cuff surgery that I need soon. 20 min jog before working legs, so that works out to every third day.


so would you say cardio is necessary to stay lean while bulking?


I have seen little evidence to support the benefit of steady-state work. This mode of training has been harshly criticised by the likes of Poliquin.
While John Berardi, et al, like to incorporate HIIT into weekly schedules.
The latter benefitted me during a fat-loss phase but the biggest personal constraint was time. I can't afford to train daily (or twice daily). So it's a case of prioritisng the iron over the treadmill for me.

If you have the time and inclination then do 1-2 HIIT sessions per week. Sprints for 20 seconds, building up time, etc, are pretty good especially if you've a handy park near the house to go out to. Just don't waste away your time and energy on steady-state.


Word. I used to avoid cardio like the plague til I started DC. A huge ass amount of protein and food with a carb cutoff and morning cardio- steady, fasted state, 3 times a week makes a HUGE difference in leanness while eating gross amounts to build rapid size.

I actually was finding myself too lazy to drive to the gym first thing in the AM, and am not doing outdoor cardio in MI in winter when it's all extra icy and dangerous out, so I go old school wrestler- I do stepups on a box slightly lower than knee high, alternating legs, for 30-45 minutes while I watch tv.

Get's the job done good and actually has helped add a little leg size without burning me out or being "HIIT", which I would never do in the AM.


It really depends on the person. A person who finds it very hard to put on weight needn't do cardio while bulking. However, some ppl just cannot live w/o everyday cardio like running around playing football, or basketball or whatever. You sound like one of those. I don't think it would hurt you too much keeping fairly active as long as you're getting in enough kcal and not running a marathon every day!


I used to do Charlie Francis style "tempo" workouts, which could be described as a form of light interval training. It provided what I considered adequate cardiovascular fitness while not disrupting my weight training.