I was asked: Which is more effective for fat loss, aerobics or resistance training?
When you do aerobics (Run/walk, cycle, body combat class...) you burn lots of calories during the session and for a while after as your metabolism returns to its normal rate. The amount you burn during the activity is determined principally by your body mass and effort level over duration. The amount of extra calories you burn after the session varies according to many factors but it's fair to say that the longer and harder you trained the longer/greater the post exercise effect on your metabolism.
So the total calorie burn is the amount during + the amount extra after
When you do resistance training you generally don't burn as many calories per hour as aerobics but the post workout effect (green line on chart above) has a shallower curve therefore you burn more extra calories after the workout. Resistance training however has the ability to raise your base metabolic rate. This means your blue line starts higher so you are burning more calories before you even move that day. The muscles you developed yesterday are still there today and still working for you.
There are ways to keep your heart rate high during resistance training check out the Short Circuits on the video section of our website.
So the short answer is:
Short term - Aerobics burns more calories now and for a short while after. Resistance typically training burns less calories now but for a longer while after.
Long term - Resistance training raises your metabolism helping you burn more calories across the whole day every day.
Do 2-4 hours of moderate aerobic activity and 1-3 hours of weights per week
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