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Cardio After Weights.

I know the best times to do cardio are right in the morning before eating anything or right after weight training. My question is: Is it a bad idea to do cardio right after just drinking a protein shake fresh off a good work out?

why is it best to do cardio in the morning before eating? sounds like an absolute, not taking into account one’s goals.

If you have solid pre-workout nutrition, then it really wouldn’t matter.

Cardio right after weight training is a pretty bad idea, this is the time your muscles need to be fed the most and you have to revert the catabolic state you’re in by eating (80 mg of carbs and 40 mg of proteins).

I’d consider consuming 10-15 grams of BCAA before any cardio.

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Like the previous poster said, I’d take some BCAAs PWO and then you’re recovery drink (depending on you goals - I.E. Surge or BCAA/Protein drink) after the cardio session, since I imagine that if you slammed a Surge type drink after the weights and then moved right into the cardio, the Surge would fuel your cardio.

My question isn’t whether or not cardio is good or bad after a work out. I know that you need protein plus carbs after a work out.

My question is have any of you done a cardio session after your PWO shake right after you’re done lifting?

Can I do cardio on a stomach full of protein and a serving of simple sugars after lifting?

The whole idea behind doing cardio either fasted in the morning or immediately after a workout is because your glycogen is depleted and its a prime time to slowly burn off some fat.

Having a protein shake before the cardio would essentially replenish you, fill you up with sugar, then you’d burn off that sugar. Well great now we’re back to square one.

What are your goals with all this? that might help.

My goals are to gain size.

I have a little body fat in my lower mid section that I’d like to take care of, but am not too worried about. I mostly just enjoy cardio and the rush it gives me. However, school schedules do not permit me to get up at 4 am and do cardio, so I need to figure out when I am going to do it as the term starts in a little over a week.

So a protein shake right after a lifting session then into a cardio session would be counter productive… Okay… What about doing cardio right after weights and then slamming the drink? Maybe doing a short 15 - 20 min. HIIT?

I give cardio it’s own day. Like when I’m not lifting. And usually only once a week for an hour. The rest consists of “NEPA”.

I don’t take the lift if I can help it, and I walk up escalators.

I do total body training plus 5x500m rower+1 min rest intervals. The intervals take approximately 15 min. I sip 1/2 Surge during my workout, it is usually gone by the time intervals come around, then I take another 1/2 after I’m done with everything. I’ve actually added some mass on a reduced calorie diet and am leaning up. My goal is cutting.

If you want to stay lean and add mass at the same time, it will be difficult. I’d say just drink your protein shake after your lifting+hiit. I would not drink a large amount of anything right before intense intervals, as it may just come back up when you are done.

Sklander, I’m not sure if this actually helps you in your question much, but last year when I lost a lot of weight, (100+) I always did about 20 minutes of fairly intense cardio after my lifting, so I’m sure it worked pretty well.

If you can even consider doing cardio directly after a training session, you’re simply not training hard enough.

And sure, I understand the exceptions like shoulders or arms day but the original point remains.

I’m surprised more people don’t do their cardio LAST thing during the day, after all their eating’s done. Dr Carlon Colker wrote a little about this approach in his book, and I was taken aback as well that no one else seems to touch on it.


Right now I’m doing about an hour of morning cardio on an quasi-empty stomach (half a scoop of whey in water before working up a sweat), a short (15 - 20 min) bout of cardio after my lifting and on non-lifting days another one hour session of cardio in the evening. Each cardio session is followed by a whey shake.

While it may seem like a bodybuilder’s nightmare concerning muscle loss, I’m curious how it’ll work out, since I’m primarily going steady state and thus don’t exert myself. I was very intrigued by this whole NEPA thing and getting a bit retrospective have to confirm that during all my leanest times I’d been walking a lot hither and thither, so to speak: about 90 - 120 min a day. Coincidence? I don’t think so, but I’ll see and let you know. To my understanding, NEPA shouldn’t clash with building/maintaining muscle. But I’m no expert, of course and keep an open mind about it.

At my leanest and most muscular phase, so far, I was going for a leisurely jog for about 30 - 40 min after almost every lifting session. Granted, I hadn’t known jack about nutrition back then, but it worked well for me.

I’d say 12 rounds of intense sprinting is good cardio after a tiring weights session.

[quote]chillain wrote:
If you can even consider doing cardio directly after a training session, you’re simply not training hard enough.


I’ve been able to train legs till I puked and I still got on a treadmill afterwards and did a fast paced walk for 30 minutes. I’m not saying that at all was productive to my gains, but I’m just saying it can be done.

If you can’t consider doing cardio directly after a training session, you’re simply not willing to push yourself enough.

I guess the real question is: Is there any scientific evidence that says taking the PWO shake 20 minutes after the lifts after you finish cardio is detrimental than doing no cardio after the lifts and taking the shake asap?

I have worked to puke level on legs and if you cool down with some other muscle group for a few minutes you can do cardio afterwards pretty easily. Like someone else said, just a matter of how hard you want to push yourself.

You have 1 hour after you finish a weight session to slam back protein. So 30-45 minutes of cardio won’t hurt you. If you do intervals which I would recommend more, you could get more bang for your buck in 20 minutes, well within the one hour sweet spot.

Also, If you wanted to get your carbs in to stop catabolism, drink a gatorade or whatever you like towards the end of your Weight training. This will give you some relief and it wont impact your stomach in terms of wanting to puke.

Also, with all the work you did with your muscles, your body freed up a ton of fat and it is circulating through your blood as you finish training. By torching it with some intense intervals for 15 minutes, you can help add a little punch to your dieting efforts.

I would advise against 1 hour+ steady state sessions. Anything like I described though s fair game.

read the fasted cardio roundtable

If you want to minimalize catabolism, then consume some carbs intra-workout. The carbs and insulin spike WILL supress cortisol better than any amino acid or protein shake.

A good starting point would be 20-30 grams of simple sugars. Work up from there.