Burn fat with weights or cardio? – Discover the answer


Burning fat with weights is more effective than with cardio. But there are many doubts about what is the best type of exercise to lose weight and burn fat. Most people think that by doing cardio exercises (running, bike, elliptical, etc.) we can burn more calories and, therefore, lose accumulated fat. Therefore, it is common to see gyms full of people sweating and spending 45 minutes doing their cardio routine. But is this correct? In this article we will discover if it is better to burn fat with weights or cardio. We will clarify some common doubts and, in addition, we will help you to better understand the functioning of our body when we exercise.

Burn fat with cardio: pros and cons

There is a very common question that appears in our mind when we want to start a weight loss plan: is it better to burn fat with weights or cardio? This question is very common and, the truth is that most of us end up applying a logic that seems overwhelming: with cardio you burn more calories, therefore, it is the best tool to lose weight. ERROR.

Although at first glance this seems the most logical and normal, the truth is that cardio is NOT the best option to burn fat and lose weight. Next we will discover the pros and cons of burning fat with cardio so that you understand how this type of work affects our body.

More calories are burned with cardio

The truth is that, when we do cardio, we burn calories and fat instantly. Our body uses the body’s energy (calories) to meet this new energy demand that we are asking for with physical exercise. With cardio, our body uses fats as an energy source to be able to provide us with the extra energy we are asking for, something that does not happen with weight training.

However, it is a job that is done momentarily, that is, fat is burned at that time and that’s it. If that week we eat a little more of the bill, for example, that exercise we have done will not be noticed because you will fill your body with energy reserve (fat) that you can use again when you train.

Sweat with cardio to lose weight

Another myth that often confuses us when it comes to knowing if it is better to burn fat with weights or cardio is to believe that, by the mere fact of sweating, we are already losing weight. But there is something we have to make clear: sweating is not synonymous with burning. That we sweat simply means that we are raising our body temperature and the body activates the self-cooling metabolism.

Pros and cons of cardio to burn fat


  • Burn calories immediately
  • Improve your cardiovascular health
  • Improve the health of your body and muscles


  • It does not increase your muscle mass or tone your body
  • It doesn’t make you stronger but stronger
  • You burn only when you exercise, a direct and timely fat burning


Burn fat with weights: pros and cons

Weight training has always been linked to people who want to be muscular or “big”. Therefore, people who want to lose weight have always left this type of exercise in the background. However, this is a serious mistake because, the truth is that weights are ideal for burning fat and defining the body.

“Do weights lose weight or gain weight?” This question is very common among people who want to lose weight. And, the truth is that if you eat a healthy diet and follow healthy habits, weights will help you lose weight, burn fat and, best of all, define and tone your body.

How to lose weight doing weights

To be able to lose weight through a weight routine, nothing better than doing many repetitions and taking a low weight but make the body work. That is, you do not have to “crush” your body with a very high weight because, then, you will perform an explosive force. But the trick is to take less weight but the muscle works. We have to notice that the body is working because, otherwise, we will not notice any benefit in our body.

Therefore, a good weight routine to burn fat would be:

  • 15 reps
  • 3 series
  • Increase weight gradually and without forcing the body to the extreme, force it to its right extent

Benefits of weightlifting

To know if it is better to burn fat with weights or cardio it is important that we keep in mind that, weights, give us two elements that cardio does not give us:

  • Increase muscle mass: the fat that we have located in the body is transformed into muscle and, therefore, we have a more toned and stylized body
  • Increase the metabolism: the more muscle mass we have, the more calories our body consumes even at rest. Therefore, if we do weights we will be able to increase the metabolism and, thus, increase the consumption of daily calories.

Pros and cons of burning fat with weights


  • Increase muscle mass while resting
  • Accelerate the metabolism by having a greater muscle mass
  • Strengthen your muscles
  • Reduce the presence of fat in your body


  • You have to progressively gain weight to be able to notice evolution in your body
  • It does not work in cases of obesity. In these cases, it is better to speak with a specialist
  • You have to follow a balanced diet to, while training, lose fat through food.


Burning fat after exercise

Therefore, when in doubt if it is better to burn fat with weights or cardio, the answer is that weights are more effective. The main reason is that, with strength training, you are not only burning calories at that precise moment but, above all, you change the functioning and metabolism of your body by consuming more calories throughout the day.

But, in addition to this, another advantage that strength training brings us is COPD, that is, the excess oxygen consumed after training. We have to keep in mind that oxygen consumption is directly related to energy consumption, that is, more calories and more fat are spent if we consume more oxygen. The weights make our body consume more oxygen after training to balance the body.

That is, to recover, the body continues to burn calories while resting. Our body increases oxygen consumption in order to synthesize proteins or repair muscle, among other functions. And this increase in metabolism extends during the 24 hours after exercising with weights.


Cardio with weights: the best training plan

Although weights are better for burning fat, the truth is that the ideal training consists of the combination of both exercises: cardio and weights. This is the perfect union to ensure that our body is in a perfect state of shape and, in addition, that we can lose weight and achieve the silhouette we so desire.

With the combination of weights and cardio we tone the body, lose calories instantly and also accelerate the basal metabolism. But if you wonder what you have to do first weights or cardio to burn fat the answer is as follows:

  • Weights at the beginning: in order to make our body consume glucose as a source of energy
  • Cardio at the end: in this way, you get the body to burn saturated fat by using it as energy

Of course: if you have little time to train, it is much more advisable that you focus on doing weight exercises to get more visible results. If you want to lose weight, weight training should be your priority and, cardio, the perfect complement.



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