Header pushup

Pros and Cons of ‘Cardio’ Exercises

I have been practicing sports for almost all my life and tried many different exercise types to get my body in shape and fit. I played football and handball at school as part of physical activities, done sprinting competitions at college and I have done bodybuilding as my main hobby and passion for over 15 years. As a nutritionist and personal trainer I like to practice all sorts of training routines and intensity to experience the benefits for myself and be able teach my clients the best possible exercises to get in shape and healthy.

Often people ask me what are the best way/s to get a fit and lean body shape. In this post I would like to share with you what I have seen, studied, practiced and experienced in my years working as a health and fitness professional. So here goes: 

Non-resistance training – cardiovascular exercise

Pros

  1. Exercises that don’t involve weights and resistance to the body are excellent for the cardiovascular system and to lose body fat all together
  2. They are normally the exercises that make us sweat such as: jogging, skipping, swimming, surfing, dancing, cycling, etc. Which is a very good way to clean the body and get rid of toxins
  3. Great to get fit fast and it is generally safe to do (that is if you use the right tools and techniques).
  4. You can practically start anywhere, any time and have very little or none investment to get started.
  5. Beneficial to most people to help increase serotonin levels (happy hormone), growth hormone (youth hormone), testosterone (sexual hormone), adrenaline and nor-adrenaline, and to control sugar levels and weight gains

Cons

  1. If not done correctly and using the right gear, technique and equipment it can cause injuries like any other physical exercise. It not because you don’t have resistance from weights that you are safe and free of potential injury.
  2. It can be detrimental to health if the person practicing is not fit or healthy to get started. It is always good to get a clear health check with your GP to see if you are able and in condition to exercise first. Cardiovascular exercise as the name says are designed to help your body and heart to stay fit and healthy, although, is important to check first if you have the physical capacity to do it
  3. It can increase dehydration significantly because of the loss of water through sweat and respiration, so, it is extremely important that you hydrate before, during and after the exercise is done
  4. It might not increase muscle mass depending of activity, intensity and time practicing. There is why is also recommended that you practice some sort of resistance training to help boost strength, performance and muscle tone