Is running bad for muscle gains?
Depending on your overall fitness goals should tell you if you should run combined with weightlifting.
If building a lot of muscles is the priority
There are actually some cons
How much cardio can I do without losing muscle gains?
Most fitness aficionados refer to themselves either as lifters or runners. If you categorize yourself in the former, it means you are most likely to be comfortable with slamming through supersets, clanking weights, and perfecting your Olympic lifts.
If you want to gain muscle with cardio, then you need to stress proficiency in your aerobic and anaerobic systems, you need to first identify your energy systems Three basic energy systems are important in improving your cardiovascular fitness and efficiency:
- Aerobic: This system is responsible for providing energy for activities that will last for a long time by breaking down amino acids, carbs, and fatty acids. It can create lactic acid whenever it is needed, and it also requires oxygen.
- Anaerobic Lactic: This system is responsible for providing the energy needed for activities that will last up to a minute. It produces lactic acid but does not require oxygen, but it does produce lactic acid.
- Anaerobic Alactic: Anaerobic alactic helps to for provide the massive energy needed within a short period (about 20 seconds) to increase speed, maximal strength, and/or power. It doesn’t create lactic acid or use up oxygen; once the 20 seconds are up, however, the anaerobic lactic system kicks in.
Cardio and Muscle Growth: Friends or Foes?
Most bodybuilders and fitness trainers do think cardio exercises or working out on the treadmill can lead to shedding some amount of muscle. The truth is that cardio can help build the muscle and also it can help to shed some amount of muscle depending on what you want to achieve.
Cardio can enhance (build and retain) muscle in three ways. They are as follows:
- It helps to improve your body’s metabolic responses to food.
- It improves muscle recovery.
- It steadies your conditioning and makes the transition from “bulking” to “cutting” a seamless process.
- Cardio is an efficient and fast and efficient means of increasing the number of capillaries (small blood vessels) that circulates through the muscles. An increase in the number of this capillaries will increase the body’s ability to transport nutrients, hormones, and oxygen to recovering or working.
- Cardio training also helps to improve insulin sensitivity, thus boosting the body’s ability to easily process carbohydrates so that greater levels of amino acids and carbs are absorbed into the muscles to enhance greater growth.
- Another wonderful advantage of improving the cardiovascular system is that it helps the body to recover faster between sets which will result in an increased overall workout capacity.
Cardio and Muscle Recovery
It has been established that intense exercise can cause damage to muscle fibers, which must then be repaired. This damage leads to the soreness that you always feel a day or two after your workout; this is scenario is referred to as delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS.
Repairing these muscle fibers requires a complex process that is dependent on two simple factors: the speed at which waste products are removed and the amount of substances needed for repair are brought to the damaged muscle.
Thus, cardio increases blood flow which explains its ability to help the body to repair damaged muscles within a short period.
The Effect of Running on the Muscle
Running causes a lot of muscle damage as compared to other forms of cardio; this is because of a large amount of eccentric muscle contractions involved in the movement. Cycling, on the other hand, has its major emphasis on concentric muscle action. Hence, it causes less overall damage, which automatically limits the amount of interference with muscle growth and recovery. Running for long hours is not a good idea, instead, opt for cycling which is capable of improving your results in the weight room. Research has helped to show that cycling when properly managed improves muscle size compared to engaging in strength training and treadmill working put together.
Cardiovascular exercises offer several major health benefits which include improved aerobic capacity, a higher work capacity during your gym session, improves your body composition, it allows for quicker recovery between both sets and sessions, and essentially keeps you from collapsing going up a few flights of stairs among others.
Will cardio ruin my muscle gains?
Cardio will not ruin muscle gains, several types of research have proved to establish this fact. In fact, it can help to accelerate your muscle gain in addition to the many benefits it also offers.
In conclusion, it is highly important that you add some cardio to your strength training and forget about those thinking in your mind that it can have any form of bad effect on your muscle; its benefits are enormous and should not be ignored.