Is Cardio or Weightlifting Better for Weight Loss?

A growing proportion of Australians are either overweight or obese. The national health survey put the figure at 67% for 2017-2018. That’s an alarming increase from 63.4% in 2014-2015.

If you’re aspiring to lose weight, therefore, you’re in good company. But you might be wondering whether it’s weight-training or cardio that’ll help you shed those pounds. That’s something we can clarify. Unfortunately, as we’ll see, the answer is a little bit complicated.

Cardio Burns More Per Session

To lose weight, you’ll need to expend more energy than you’re consuming. The fact is that an hour of cardio will burn more energy than an hour of weight training. The precise amount you lose will depend on how much weight you’re already carrying, but the general rule is that cardio burns more than weights per session.

Weight Training Burns More Over Time

Of course, this doesn’t tell the whole story. Weight training confers other benefits besides fat loss. It’ll improve your posture and decrease the risk of injury. Weights are built to apply strain to your muscles. Those tiny fibers will tear, and the body will respond by building new muscle tissue. The more muscle mass you have, the more energy your body will put into maintaining this muscle mass. Thus, weight training will raise your resting metabolism. A weight-trainer will burn calories at an accelerated rate after a session, while a runner will go back to normal pretty quickly.



There’s no form of exercise that’ll compensate for a lousy diet. You can’t change the laws of physics: if you’re eating more than you’re shifting, then your body will continue to preserve that subcutaneous fat as an emergency reserve of energy.

If you’re struggling to control your portion size, then there are a few simple tricks you can use. The first is to invest in smaller plates and bowls. The second is simple: head over to RS Components, buy a set of scales and weigh out all of your ingredients prior to cooking. Of course, if you haven’t yet learned how to cook, this might be a problem. Hello Fresh claim that one in ten weeknight meals in Australia come from a takeaway – and if you want to lose weight, you have better not be a member of this category.


Before we conclude, we should state that the best form of exercise is the sort you actually do. If you don’t enjoy riding a bike, then it’s very unlikely that you’ll motivate yourself over the long term to do so regularly. The best approach is to develop a habit that you’ll be able to stick to – so perhaps the best question isn’t which form of exercise is the most effective: it’s which one you most enjoy!

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