Cardio, weights or strength training – how often should you really be doing each?

If you’re a self-confessed “gym junkie”, chances are you have a preference for either a sweaty cardio class or a solid session on the weights. It’s pretty common to have a favourite workout style – not many of us have a penchant for both.

Perhaps this is the result of our natural body shape – or perhaps it is the result of past exercise habits that we became accustomed to growing up. If you played sport as a child, you likely struggle less when it comes to hard-hitting cardiovascular training.

Whatever your inclination, the reality is that we need a broad and varied exercise regime to keep us fit, from both a health perspective and a physical perspective. But with an overload of resources to choose from in the digital age and different trainers giving you varying perspectives on the matter, it’s hard to know how much of each style we should really be committing to.

That’s why we’re here to help unpack this question and help you to determine: what is the ideal ratio of cardio to strength training?

The general rule to abide by is: there is no general rule. The answer to this question depends entirely on your body, your age and your fitness goals – amongst other factors.

The general rule to abide by is: there is no general rule. The answer to this question depends entirely on your body, your age and your fitness goals – amongst other factors.

Cardio training is beneficial to get that blood pumping. This means it’s excellent for a healthy heart and burning calories – so if weight loss is your primary goal, a run on the treadmill or one of our famous spin classes is going to work wonders.

It’s also great for long-term gains; regular cardio leads to a lower blood pressure, improved sleep and a strengthened immune system.

Cardio training is beneficial to get that blood pumping. This means it’s excellent for a healthy heart and burning calories – so if weight loss is your primary goal, a run on the treadmill or one of our famous spin classes is going to work wonders.

It’s also great for long-term gains; regular cardio leads to a lower blood pressure, improved sleep and a strengthened immune system.

On the other hand, strength training provides incredible benefits that you just can’t achieve through cardio alone. It’s in the name; strength training helps to develop muscles to be strong. Lifting weights help to sculpt and tone specific areas of your body – whether it’s chiselled abs or defined biceps you’re seeking, weight training is the way to go.

Not only that – resistance training also builds bone density, boosts your metabolism and improves your posture. Come along to one of our choreographed RIP classes using barbells and you’ll see why; continuously correcting and tweaking our form is a priority for our members.

So when it comes to your personal fitness regime, think about your lifestyle and what you hope to achieve in the coming month, quarter and year. What do you hope to get out of your VHC membership? Do you hope to shed a few unwanted kilos, shape your physique – or just improve your overall wellbeing?

Talk to one of our friendly coaches if you’re unsure and let’s come up with a personalised program that you can stick to. Once this has been determined, you’ll have your answer. 

No matter which way you slice it, balance is key.

Even if you’re a heavy weightlifting champion, a touch of cardio once a week will do you the world of good. And vice versa if you’re a marathon runner – the occasional deadlift and bicep curl will assist you more than you know.