Tyler Robbins Fitness

Tyler Robbins has his B.Sc. in Biochemistry: Pre-Medical, is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), is certified through USA Weightlifting, and a CrossFit Level 2 Trainer.

Resistance training improves cardiovascular fitness

I have never been a fan of the term "cardio." Personally, I find too many people get their mind stuck with generalizing terms such as "resistance training" and "cardio." The common belief is that resistance training, aka, lifting weights, makes muscles large and bulky and "cardio" is long, drawn-out exercise in which you move your body in a way to get your heart rate up as high as possible for either intervals of time (interval training), or an extended period of time (running, swimming, cycling). In actuality, the lines between various forms of exercise are far less defined.

I have written about this very topic in the past, focusing on the idea that, for whatever reason, "cardiovascular exercise" is believed to be superior for burning body fat. This is simply not true at all.

So, I believe there are two main reasons why individuals use "cardiovascular exercise" (in its most common believed forms - interval training or steady state).

  1. A belief that periods of high heart rate (i.e. interval training), or steady state heart rate (i.e. distance running/swimming/cycling) are superior for weight/fat loss. Although these types of training can be effective for losing weight/body fat, they should by no means be considered superior to an effective resistance training program.

  2. A belief that periods of high heart rate (i.e. interval training), or steady state heart rate (i.e. distance running/swimming/cycling) are superior for training for cardiovascular health.

Remember, the human body responds to stresses placed upon it by adapting in very specific ways. What I would consider "standard" views on cardiovascular fitness (running, cycling, swimming) for extended periods of time, or in short bursts of intense effort (interval training) can be a very effective way of improving cardiovascular fitness. However, it is not the only way.