This is a BIG question with lots of variables and no straightforward, one-fits-all answer so, let’s break it down to goals.
If you want to improve your endurance then do cardio exercises but if your goal is to lose weight and be leaner, strength exercises come first. If your goal is to improve your general fitness then the most effective way to make time for both training styles is to do them in the same session: strength followed by cardio or vice versa.
Take a look at Metabolic Strength Training to maximise calorie and fat burn while also building muscle. Make your strength sessions more metabolically challenging with high-intensity interval training or Tabata. These efforts force your body to expend more energy (burn more calories) in less time.
The idea behind metabolic strength sessions is simple. By making small tweaks to rest time, intensity, reps, sets and time under tension, you force your body to use different energy pathways, therefore increasing metabolic demand and expending more energy. This often translates to greater weight loss and an increase in lean muscle
Below is an example of a metabolic strength circuit. Try it once a week, varying the rest time between exercises as noted below.
Complete 10 reps of each exercise. Repeat the sequence 2–3 times total.
1. A squat with shoulder press
3. Lunge with bicep curl
4. Star Jump
5. Push Up
6. Dumbbell Rows
7. Jumping Jacks
8. Shoulder Plank
9. Lateral Raise
10. High Knees
30 seconds rest between each exercise
Week 2: 15 seconds rest between each exercise
Week 3: 60 seconds rest after you complete all of the exercises in the entire set
Please note – you can change the number of reps, sets, intensity and weight you use (or don’t use) to make the workout more, or less, challenging. You can modify each exercise as necessary to suit your current level of fitness, strength and mobility. These types of workouts are designed to be challenging, but be sure to use caution, particularly if you’re new to this type of exercise.
Recovery is important to make sure you’re in top shape to do it all again tomorrow, so why not take a look at our AP Warming Massage Oil and Recovery Balm, ideal for post-exercise recovery.