T Nation

Benefits Of Cardio When Bulking?

Hi!

  1. Does low intensity cardio like walking still have positive effects on body composition when one is bulking?

  2. Does HIIT have any positive effects on bodycomposition?

[quote]warsoe wrote:
Hi!

  1. Does low intensity cardio like walking still have positive effects on body composition when one is bulking?

[/quote]

I would say it keeps the fat off just a little bit but more importantly it keeps the heart and lungs strong. You don’t want to breathe heavy when you walk to the rodge do you?

[quote]

  1. Does HIIT have any positive effects on bodycomposition?[/quote]

Are you trying to add muscle or burn fat? Can you do HIIT and recover enough to lift hard and heavy your next session?

yes and yes. to what degree will largely depend on your diet.

I really look at cardio from the cardiovascular benefit of making your heart and lungs more efficient thus allowing your body to better utilize the nutrients.

on top of you burning more calories through the process.

It will let you eat more calories, it will keep your metabolism up, it will keep you heart and lungs strong, and it’ll help you stay leaner most likely. So there are plenty of benefits.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:

Are you trying to add muscle or burn fat? Can you do HIIT and recover enough to lift hard and heavy your next session?[/quote]

As the subjects says - I’m trying to add muscle.

CT stated in his Beast Building articles, which are mass building phases that cardio in excess of 2 times per week would be detrimental to maximizing your gains I believe

They both have their benefits, but using them too often when your main goal is mass will not give you optimal results for your specific goal

YoungBull hit it. Let me tell you from the perspective of an endurance athlete (runner and swimmer) that doing too much cardio will really prevent solid muscle growth.

Id spent 30-60 minutes on cardio 4x a week and lift right after (4x a week as well). My lifts DID NOT INCREASE in weight for months but like a moron I thought nothing of it. I was not growing … I was in fact losing weight, strength, and even cardio endurance. This is partly because I was not eating enough, but also because my time spent doing cardio was too high for more bulking goals.

However, cardio done smartly can be beneficial for the aforementioned reasons that I will not reenumerate.

Disagree with the 2 posts above.

I’ve been cycling to work and back every week day for over a month now (about 5-6 hours a week), and I offset this by adding 800-1000 calories per day, extra nutrients & more sleep.

I’ve hit PR’s in the gym for the past 3 weeks, and I’m still gaining size. My weight still fluctuates but remains similar overall, but I think it will adjust, stabilize, and I will continue growing once I’ve gotten used to the routine. It seem slike the bit of fat I am carrying is being swapped out and hence my weight is remaining more or less the same while I am adding muscle.

If calories in > than calories out, and I am lifting heavy often enough, could someone explain to me how I won’t gain muscle?

EDIT:
I will add that being an endo I have no problems adding weight. I think someone who naturally struggles to add muscle and constantly has to feed themselves will find it a lot harder to gain weight while doing the above. However, no one said it would be easy and I’m doing what needs to be done.

[quote]warsoe wrote:
Hi!

  1. Does low intensity cardio like walking still have positive effects on body composition when one is bulking?

  2. Does HIIT have any positive effects on bodycomposition?[/quote]

  3. Yes, it also helps with overall health and helps transports nutrients throughout your body.

  4. It could, I find it helpful, just because it has similar effects to weight training.

The cardio will also help remove metabolic wastes and lactic acid resulting from the lifting. In fact, I remember Stan McQuay finding out how beneficial cardio was for him, even for gaining. Helps with recovery (if not done too much and you’re eating enough).

[quote]njrusmc wrote:

Id spent 30-60 minutes on cardio 4x a week and lift right after (4x a week as well).

However, cardio done smartly can be beneficial for the aforementioned reasons that I will not reenumerate.[/quote]

exactly.
why do people think cardio has to equal a long time?

10-15 mins of light-mod cardio isn’t going to set back your gains if done more than twice a week.

[quote]warsoe wrote:
Zap Branigan wrote:

Are you trying to add muscle or burn fat? Can you do HIIT and recover enough to lift hard and heavy your next session?

As the subjects says - I’m trying to add muscle.[/quote]

I would skip the HIIT and lift hard. Do a little cardio 2 or 3 times a week. As pointed out it doesn’t have to be marathon sessions.

Brisk walk on a fully inclined treadmill for 20 minutes. It’s short but it’s enough to challenge your heart and get the nutrients and wastes to flow where they belong. Save HIIT for fat loss and concentrate on lifting heavy ass weight. Finally, eat like a horse (or maybe eat a horse).