T Nation

Need Advice for Post Workout/Pre Cardio


I asked this question a few weeks ago but didn't really get a reply.

I need to start doing cardio to loose some bodyfat. I workout at the gym for about 45 minutes, i train 4 days a week, i want to do cardio 3 days a week, after every workout except legs.

After my 45 minute workout, what should i consume before i start my 15-20 minute cardio session to prevent catabolism?

Right now i have a PWO shake with 40g protein, 25g Dextrose, 25g Malto, im guessing for loosing bodyfat thats probably a bad idea. So do i just have 2 scoops protein powder and no high GI carbs? and then have some carbs after my cardio? If anyone can give me some advice i would appreciate it.


Keep the carbs in teh drink. your weight loss and muscle gain wont be from the miniiscule amount of food you eat around your workouts, but rather determined by what you eat the rest of the day. ALso, the carbs from the drink wont be turned to fat because you just finisehd a workout and your insulin levels will be high


If possible, I would really recommend splitting your cardio and weights into different sessions, for purposes of maintaining/gaining muscle while losing bodyfat.

Check out Dr. Lowery's "100 Workouts to Ripped City" article fot the cardio.

If not, I'd say just do 20 minutes of High Intensity Interval Training cardio immediately after you're done weight training, before you consume anything. Then, when you're done with both weights and your HIIT, consume your high GI carbs and protein.


Ya man i wish i could split them but the gym is a ways away and i dont have the time. So that artical explains how to do the HIIT cardio? Could i sip on gatorade while i run or something? Im usually pretty dead after a hard session of weights.


No, the Dr. Lowery article explains a good way of doing cardio seperately from your weight training, specifically aimed at direct fat loss.

HIIT cardio isn't too complex. It's basically alternating between moderate and high intensity cardio. So, say you're outside, you would walk briskly for 1 minute, then sprint for 30 seconds, walk for 1 minute, sprint for 30 seconds, so on and so forth.

As for sipping on something, I would recommend probably sticking to just water, or maybe a protein-only drink. I just personally think that giving your body simple carbs to burn off will make it always take that option for energy, rather than burning fat for energy.


Thanks for the advice so far.

One last question; I'm curious why you wouldn't recommend a scoop of whey after weights/before HIIT cardio? I havn't done cardio for like 3 years because i've been bulking and im just scared shitless of loosing muscle mass because it's taken me so long etc., thanks again.


In my last reply, I actually did recommend a scoop of whey, in responding to your question about sipping something after weights but before cardio, I said use either "water or a protein-only drink".

The protein-drink would be water with some whey powder mixed in, albeit a small amount. You only need a small dose of amino acids to stave off catabolism of your muscles in the short term.

I am only strongly recommending you stay away from ingesting simple carbs before any cardio you're doing with the hopes of fat loss. You had asked about sipping on Gatorade, which is a bad idea.

I hear you about being mortified of losing hard-earned muscle mass. But if you're eating enough quality calories throughout the day, the 20 minutes of HIIT after your weight training really shouldn't have a negative effect on your muscle mass at all.


Awesome man thanks a lot for the advice.


on your leg day, go for 15 minutes on the stationary bike and take it kinda slow (fat-burning zone baby).

It reduces doms.


doms? I always was told and read that cardio on leg day was a big no no?


15 slow minutes on a stationary bike isn't exactly "cardio". It's just very light leg work that will bring some blood to the trained area, and through several mechanisms potentially decrease DOMS.

But yes, my personal recommendation would be to never "run" or do strenuous lower body cardio the same day as you weight train legs.