T Nation

Muscle Eating Cardio?


This goes along with my last post. I asked if there was that much muscle being ate during a.m. cardio, and is it worth worring about?

This morniong I did 3.75 miles on the treadmill only burning 450 calories. I drank a protein shake before bed and I also recently started taking ZMA. DO I look like I am head down muscle eating road, or am I alright?

As for ZMA, anyone had any good progress on it?


You losing more muscle mass would be the result of your OVERALL DIET and how much weekly cardio you are doing, not whether you just trained hard in the morning.

If you aren't taking in enough calories overall to support the muscle you have during fat loss and your OVERALL protein intake isn't high enough, along with overdoing cardio, you will lose more muscle mass. Dieting isn't just about changing one factor. It involves everything you do everyday.


I wouldn't say ZMA is a supplement you "make progress on." It's akin to vitamins, do you make progress on them? ZMA helps keep up levels of Zinc and Magnesium that are generally low in weight lifters (or lower than optimal for our goals), and they help in testosterone production (if I'm not mistaken).

People do report some weird dreams while taking ZMA, but it's not going to give you a pump, or make you huge in and of itself; it's not that type of product.


If ZMA helps in the production of T than would stand to reason that results can be seen by using it. Doesnt steroids produce a super T effect? I dont know, Im just asking.


If you are deficient in vitamins, your body will not run as efficiently as it would if you supplied it the vitamins you are missing. This is no different. There is no "super T effect". All you are doing is trying to help your body do what it should be doing in the first place. You aren't taking steroids. You are taking some minerals.


ZMA for me is about getting quality sleep and therefore better recovery. Its about the only product that you know is working the first time you take it cos of the mad dreams you have!! When Im on ZMA my 'general sense of well-being' is increased. Give it a go, its not overly expensive.


I most be saying something that I am not meaning to. I am not claiming or asking if ZMA is the miracle pill. I am simply asking if I am putting money out the window?

I know vitamins are good for you. I am regarding the recovery effects and so forth.

However, thanks alot for all the input.


You need Zinc, Magnesium and pyridoxine anyway. So taking a supplement, albeit one directed towards bodybuilders and athletes, will insure you probably get enough of these things.

If it insures you are taking in enough of the aforementioned and it helps sleep, a vital component of bodybuilding and the fact you need sleep anyway, then its hardly putting money out the window.


Like Prof. X was saying, it's only going to benefit those who don't already have it in their diet (or if they're not absorbing it because of their diet, like if you have a lot of calcium with it or take a form of zinc or magnesium that isn't as easily absorbed).

ZMA is supposed to be easier to absorb, with the help of one of the B vitimins, and either the zinc or the magnesium (I think it's the mag.) naturaly helps with sleep and that fact alone makes the product worth it.

I've definitley felt like I slept better while taking it, and I remember more dreams, and figgure that I'm going into a deeper sleep with it. That can lead to better rest and recovery which is always a good thing.

Again, it works if you're deficient in it, and from what I've read, weight trainers are typically deficient in it for some reason (sorry I'm not too scientific, but I'm going off of memory here).

For the money, I'd say it's definitley at least worth a shot.


Yeah but you are missing the point. Whilst you could eat magnsesium and zinc and get enough and get enough pyridoxine, this formula does several things...

a. Avoids having to optimise the diet which can be difficult and expensive.

b. Avoids having to eat zinc / magnesium rich foods which might give you excess calories or other undesirable ingredients as well, for instance fat.

c. Is composed to give a far greater effect than the ingredients on their own. You would not be able to replicate this effect with whole foods.


Just as an afterthought, supplementing with Magnesium aids in maximal strength, this is well documented, most people are defficient in it. I believe Charles Poliquin suffered a suspected heart attack which was possibly linked to him being magnesium defficient. I bet you he takes ZMA these days.

B6 and Homocysteine, too much to discuss, best Google this one. B6 has other roles of course just like Mag and Zinc.


The total calories you consume in a day is important, but 3500 calories with proper nutrition timing is better than eating even 5000 calories within 2-3 meals (like an obese american). If there is a lot of time between your meals, you'll definitely be going catabolic if you've been training hard.