Do I have to do Cardio and Trainer for results?


No you don’t have to. But it makes the whole process a lot tougher. Nothing magical happens when doing cardiovascular exercise – it just burns calories. High intensity ‘cardio’ burns more calories than low intensity ‘cardio’. And low intensity burns more calories than no cardio.

But remember – cardio is really a generic term to describe exercise that targets the cardiovascular system. That covers a lot of different things from steady state aerobic work to interval training to complexes and circuits.

I think most people don’t like walking on a treadmill and being completely bored. I understand that. But if it’s traditional cardio that you dislike – you can do some “non-traditional” cardio…

If you are dieting down for a show or a photo-shoot and have a lot of time, I don’t usually add in any type of energy system work in the beginning – we work on creating a caloric deficit through diet only – adding in more calorie burning in the later stages. However if you need to drop fat as fast as possible – some extra energy system work is nesessary (we currently use the metabolic acceleration programs, or kettlebells and TRX routines).

But at the end of the day — is going for a walk for 30 mins each day really all that bad? Get your Ipod on, some good music or an audio book and head out the door.

Cardio is just a tool to burn calories when you’re trying to get lean. It makes no real difference in terms of fat loss whether you burn the calories off, or don’t eat them in the first place.

Can a trainer help with results?

February 15th, 2010

Supervised exercise versus non-supervised exercise for reducing weight in obese adults.
Nicolaï SP et al
J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2009 Mar;49(1):85-90.

This research study looked at the effects of training with supervision/instruction (ie a qualified trainer) versus “advice”

Two groups – Group one met a trainer twice a week for 4 months (as a group).
Group two received basic advice to increase physical activity and access to a fully equipped gym (any exercise they did was unsupervised).

The group with supervision lost on average 362% more fat over a 4-month period. (Total fat loss of 13.4lbs in the coached group – and only 3.7lbs in the advice only group)

Interesting side note -they made these improvements without ANY dietary advice given.

This is not a new finding, nor is it that surprising as a good coach or training partner/team can really help with your results. The fact that the group exercised together only served to improve those results further (as social support is one of the key variables in fat loss success) so I’m not sure that the supervision and instruction alone was entirely responsible for the enhanced results – or the social support was part of it. However, it’s clear that together it’s an unbeatable combination.

You’d also have to assume that there was more instruction in the supervised group as there was more contact with instructors.

Another study came out a few years ago showing that a participant would exercise 30% harder or more (can’t remember the exact number) with someone just watching them (i.e. not offering any instruction or encouragement). You can imagine how that could translate into much greater results, when added with a good program, great coaching, great social support and great instruction.

If you are serious about changing your body – hire a coach, or get a great training partner or team to help you.



About MaxOut Performance Fitness
Sergio Maldonado is a Sports Performance and Fitness Coach in the San Francisco Bay Area. He strives to be the best at what he does through training, professional development courses, and practice. The purpose of this blog is to get out some of the knowledge that he obtains to better help others in their pursuits towards fitness and a better life.

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