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Why you should be doing cardio year round

Updated: Dec 1, 2020

If your a seasoned pro bodybuilder or just a casual gym goer trying to grow as much lean muscle as you can the chances are that your focus is almost exclusively is on resistance training. residing cardo for weight lose routines or preps, But you are leaving gains on the table by overlooking cardiovascular training. There is a plefra of scientific research showing that cardio can increase muscle growth when fitted into a resistance training program.

Types of cardio

Exercise is place into two different categories aerobic (oxygen-dependent) and anaerobic (oxygen-less). Oxygen dependent is generally more endurance based exercise, this doesn't mean a marathon but sustained cardio even 20mins on the treadmill would fit into this category. anaerobic (oxygen-less) is generally high intensity intervals like weight training.

Research is almost conclusive that to have an optimal performance and health you need to be incorporating both forms for exercise in your plan. Overlooking ether of them could be detrimental to your progress and health. The data is still coming in on this but its clear that that incorporating both of these types increase myostatin and IGF-1 which are key to increasing size and staying lean

Increased Mitochondrial Biogenesis

Mitochondria are the power stations of your body, they are responsible for energy production and substrate metabolism. In short the more mitochondria you the higher your metabolic rate.

If you have researched the effects of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), you may be familiar with mitochondrial biogenesis( The process your cellular mitochondria increase in number). Recent research shows that a family of transcriptional coactivators - known as the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ) coactivator (PGC-1) family - are the “master regulators” of mitochondrial biogenesis. There are 15 know coactivator in the body, But PGC-1 family has been show to be critical for regulating our response to exercise poetically in endurance activities. More research on the PGC-1 protein can stimulates skeletal muscle growth

There are at least 15 known coactivators in the human body, but the PGC-1 family appears to be especially crucial for regulating our response to exercise (especially endurance exercise/cardio). New findings suggest that one of the PGC-1 proteins - PGC-1α4 - actually stimulates skeletal muscle hypertrophy (we will touch more on this below).

PGC-1α4 and IGF-1

Pgc-1a4 is a protein that targets a differnt set of geanes from PGC-1. It targets myostatin and IGF-1 pathways, Both of these are well know to regulate skeletal muscle and strength. Recent papers have concluded that PGC-1a4 increases by up to 150% after resistance training. However both PGC-1a4 and PGC-1 both increase when when combining both aerobic and anaerobic Workouts.

In short

Dont be lazy, I think deep down we all know that cardio in the off season is important and can make all the difference. You didnt need to read this article to know it you know it needs to be done. But lets cut to the chase its boaring as hell, but if you don't want to leave anything on the cardio you need to be doing cardio 3-4 times a week all you need is 20-30 minutes.

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