How Important Is Cardio for Bodybuilding?
Cardiovascular exercise is just as important as muscle mass gaining workouts.
If you are a bodybuilder, you need cardio as the first step to earning that ripped body.
On the other hand, cardio may consume your hard-earned muscles if you do it the wrong way.
For this reason, it is important to learn how to do such workouts while developing muscles.
Reasons Why Bodybuilders Should Do Cardio
It Makes the Heart Stronger
Bodybuilders need more than huge muscles; they also need a stronger heart.
When you lift weights in a workout style or do high-intensity interval (HIIT) practice, you may think that you’re getting a more effective, modified form of “cardio” and have the same results as a long, slow run.
But the truth is, it’s not that easy.
HIIT is a fantastic way to burn through a lot of calories relative to steady-state cardio—and I love combining a tough workout to beat in about 20 minutes when I want to make the most of my time.
However, those quick but intense workouts don’t really involve the cardiovascular system the way we expect.
Among the most important aspects of regular aerobic exercise is something called stroke volume.
It is determined by how much blood is pumped out of the left ventricle, which is one of the chambers of the heart involved in cardiac function.
You have a serious advantage if your heart can pump more oxygen with less effort, and you can obtain it from cardio in a stable state.
Cardio Is Good for Your Blood Vessels
A strong heart needs a network of healthy capillaries to maintain a smooth performance.
If you are bulking up, you also need to make sure that your heart and blood vessels are ready for action.
If you perform a steady-state cardiovascular exercise, you are helping your body add more capillaries to the muscle tissue compared to only lifting.
Cardio Can Improve Your Overall Performance
When you evaluate a lifter who moves a maximum of eight high-quality sets to another lifter who moves just six high-quality sets, the former lifter’s greater work ability will help him produce more volume.
As a result, he can have potentially more gains over a year.
The secret here is the ability to work, or simply the ability to do more work over a given period of time.
This is crucial if you want to build more size or strength, as the ability to perform eight quality squat sets instead of six can mean an extra 1,000 pounds of work moved in your training session!
Cardio Exercise Tips for Bodybuilders
Cardio exercise is among the most essential factors to get a well-defined, muscular body.
Just like resistance training, cardio comes with science to level up its results.
The fat you lose is parallel to the number of fat-burning exercises that you engage in.
Here are some of the tips you must know if you want to get the most out of your cardio workouts.
Increase the Intensity of Your Exercise
Cardio intensity is determined as a percentage of your maximum heart rate used during a workout.
You want to hit about 65 percent of your maximum heart rate to burn fat more effectively.
This is considered the perfect region for fat burning. Subtract your age from 220 and then multiply it by 0.65 to determine your maximum heart rate.
This is the ideal number of heartbeats.
Your Timing Is Important
When you first wake up in the morning, on an empty stomach, it’s most beneficial to have your cardio workout.
Instead of eating carbohydrates and then beginning to burn fat, it is better to exercise on an empty stomach, as your body can tap into its fat reserve of fuel.
Even if this is the perfect time for exercise, it may be just as successful late in the afternoon if you follow a good diet.
Monitor Your Nutrition
Regardless of how good your diet is, without cardio, you will never reach your maximum potential for definition.
On the other hand, no matter how much cardio you do, without a well-thought-out diet, you will never reach the maximum potential for definition.
Your nutrition while losing weight is just as important as your nutrition while bodybuilding.
To burn fat, you have to burn more calories than you consume. To determine your daily caloric consumption, multiply your weight by 15-17, based on your activity level.
That figure shows how many calories your body requires every day to sustain your existing muscle mass.
If you are reducing your calories, lower your increments of about 500 every 10 days to prevent placing your body in a starvation mode that leads to a reduction of muscle tissue.
For example, I adjust my protein intake of up to 2.0 grams per pound of bodyweight.
Warm-Up and Cool Down
The drawbacks of not warming up and cooling down the body must not be taken lightly.
In fact, working out without performing these two processes can impose unnecessary stress on the lungs, chest, joints, and connective tissues.
For this reason, be sure to stretch before you walk or jog around your neighborhood.
You must also do the following before playing any sport or engaging in any physical activity.
For better results, slowly increase the pace for about three to five minutes until you reach the ideal heart rate.
You can also use a cool downtime of about three to five minutes after your workout.
In conclusion, cardio exercise is beneficial for people who want to both lose weight and gain muscles.
It improves the function of the heart, provides better endurance, and allows for greater overall performance.
While gaining more muscle mass, make sure to include cardiovascular exercises to keep your heart healthy.
Unlike what most people think, cardio can provide a lot of benefits for bodybuilders if it’s done in the right way.