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  1. #1
    iceblueken is offline Registered User
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    Cardio Workout: Swimming or Running/Jogging?

    Hi! I'm trying to get into a cardio routine. I already do the elliptical at the gym..but it really doesn't feel like I am doing enough. Running and jogging are options for me..but I am not a big fan of either of them. I heard that swimming is actually one of the best kind of "cardio" exercises out there because it works out many zones around your body. I am basically trying to deplete my fat around my midsection and have my abs show. Is running/jogging or swimming the best way to go?...or should I just stick with the easy elliptical machine?

    Any help would be appreciated!

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  3. #2
    muscledude24 is offline Registered User
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    These are all good methods of cardio... i used to swim in highschool and i can tell you that the fat definitely melted away like no other... I also tend to stay away from the ellipticals because i feel like i'm not doing anything, so I tend to stick to running.

    One thing you have to know is that you can't target one area and lose fat from just that area. When your body creates fat, it distributes it equally to every part of your body (unless you drink a lot of beer, then the cortisol creates stomach fat). Burning it works the same way, you'll see overall fat loss rather than fat loss in just one area. Doing crunches will not burn the fat on your stomach.

    Also, for the most effective fat loss, you'll need a modified diet. I'm no dietician, but I've had my fair share of experience with different eating strategies and I know what works. PM me if you want some advice.

    Good luck with your fitness goals!

    Aaron Smyth
    Last edited by ~LV~; Mar. 16/07 at 12:26 PM.

  4. #3
    zeroth is offline First Set
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    If I'm not aware enough, I definitely can slide on an elliptical and not get any real sort of workout. I can do 60-80 minutes at a reasonable speed but one that doesn't elevate my heartrate, so it feels like time wasted. That tends to happen to me the most when I'm reading while I'm exercising and when I'm concentrating hard on what I'm reading and not balancing that against what I'm doing.

    It helps to just force myself to be much more aware of what I'm doing and to focus on it. Which means that I can't really do the type of reading that I tend to want to do for that length of time. So then I turn to music...

    When I use an ipod in combination with one of the podrunner podcasts, I can sustain my pace perfectly because I just go with the rhythm of the music. The challenge there is to find beats that you enjoy and that are just the right pace. For me, doing something at 135 for a warmup and then moving to 140-145 BPM is great and there are some great mixes out there for that. I love my ipod.

  5. #4
    iceblueken is offline Registered User
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    Ah good to know...Which cardio exercise burns the most cals in an hour? also do they differ in so much that I should do them all ( to change up my cardio routine, so my body doesn't adapt) or just stick to one? Do you necessarily need alot of protein to build a 6 pack abs...I am a vegetarian who tries his best to get a good amount (75-100 g) of protein daily. Can I just stick with cardio and ab exercises or do i ABSOLUTELY need large amounts of protein to help with ab definition.

    PS. I hate vegetables...I haven't had a vegetable in years...not going to change anytime soon..does this choice impact the results very much?

  6. #5
    Karky is offline Former member of VulgarityGang
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    you could do them all for variation, no harm in that. What burns more, im unsure, but what i do know is that the cardio form has more to say than just the cardio exersice, by that i mean this:

    HIIT style burns alot more than steady state cardio. HIIT is when you do intense intervals followed by not intense "recovery intervals" it makes the metabolism speed up for a longer time after exercise than steady state cardio (weight training also has this effect)

    Personally, i love swimming. You use pretty much all the muscles in your body and you get a low impact workout, theres not alot of stress on joints. like with running, when your feet hit the ground the knees has to absorb the shock. (alot of running on hard surfaces can cause damage over time)

  7. #6
    trainerbob is offline Warming Up
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    Nothing burns calories like a good hard run. Here's a table that shows some examples of how much calories are burned in different forms of exercise.

    You serious about the fat melting off during swimming, muscledude? I personally have never seen a 'ripped' swimmer, not even when I watch the Olympics. The cold water has an effect on bodyfat being used as an energy source, from what I've read.

    On the flip side, I've seen lots of ripped runners. Problem is the wear and tear on the joints. I personally prefer biking. You can cover lots of ground, so it doesn't get boring like running can, and if you push hard enough you can burn tons of calories.

  8. #7
    Karky is offline Former member of VulgarityGang
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    that table dident include what type of workout. I dont think swimming burns alot less than running. Swimming does use the entire body. And you have never seen a ripped swimmer? i know lots of swimmers in my town, most of them look pretty good. But i agree, not many swimmers have ripped abz, but that doesnt have to have anything to do with swimming burning alot of cals or not.

  9. #8
    trainerbob is offline Warming Up
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    Geez, Karky, every post I've seen from you has been argumentative. I never said swimmers can't look good or be in good cardio shape. I said that there's something about swimming that prevents the burning of fat that you get with other types of cardio, whether it's due to appetite stimulation or a metabolic effect from the cold water. Here's a pic of Michael Phelps, Gold medal winning swimmer, to back up what I'm saying. Yes, he's in very good shape. No, he's not what I'd call ripped.

    And sure, I linked to a really basic table of calories burned. Here's a much better one I found with just a few minutes of Googling. You can see, running is still king as far as the calories it burns. That's my point. I never said swimming didn't burn a lot of calories, I said it's probably not your ideal option for burning fat.

    Want an independent source to back me up? Here's a good research backed article on the subject.

  10. #9
    Karky is offline Former member of VulgarityGang
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    ofcource i argument my point. But by all means, go out and run, im not saying its inefficient.

    sorry if you think i agrue too much, seems theres more people here who think so. maybe i should just shut my mouth and go home?
    Last edited by Karky; Mar. 15/07 at 02:58 PM.

  11. #10
    Randy42649 is offline Registered User
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    Karky, I don't think you should do that. There's a lot of us in this world who are perceived as too argumentative. I should know. I'm one of them. You need to express yourself and ask whatever questions you have. One thing I have done in the past is taken people's comments (like the one Bob gave you) and tried to use them constructively. Maybe from now on, when you post, think about how you say what you want to say. Make sure that you get your point across though. Personally, I didn't really see anything wrong with your earlier post but that's just me.
    Randy

  12. #11
    Running Man is offline First Set
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    I like running!! No fear of drowning or swimming in other people's waste

  13. #12
    LouisvilleSLUG is offline In Orientation
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    I'm certainly not an authority, but, I disagree with a couple of things that have been said so far. First, I swam competitively for 10 years. I know lots of "ripped" swimmers. If you think swimmers aren't ripped, look at this much better picture of Michael Phelps. If you'd like to compare non-ripped swimmers to non-ripped runners, I can find pictures all day.


    Second, fat people finish marathons all the time.

    Third, if you don't do them correctly, it doesn't matter which one you do.

    My vote is swimming. It's full body. Running tears your body up faster.

  14. #13
    blackedout is offline Second Set
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    I have actually also heard that swimming doesn't provide the same amount of fat burn as other aerobic exercises and have even read a paper about it somewhere. It was a research paper trying to determine from mounds of data why swimmers despite burning a large amount of calories during exercise did not exhibit the same fat loss benefits as those that participated in other forms of exercise. The theory of the author was that due to being surrounded by the water you do not raise your core temperature the same while swimming as you do with other aerobic exercises therefore the fat burning effects following the actual exercise period are not as prolonged. Wish I could find it online as it was an interesting read and was well researched.

    Anyway that said I still swim on occasion its a good low impact exercise and fun.

  15. #14
    evolution is offline I love me some Mreik
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    I'm not really fond of comparing the physiques of certain athletes to desirable physiques in a normal population. If we did, we'd all be doing the cardio of Olympic sprint athletes. Not to mention, I've seen plenty of fat people finish marathons and they do tons of cardio.

    When I was sitting in ex. phys. class I remember the instructor discussing different forms of cardio. Anyway, swimming was put towards the top of the list since it uses 4X the amount of energy as compared to cardio at the same intensity. Typically you'll be using an inside gym pool, so cold is typically a non-issue.

    But since we're showing links for fun-
    How does lap swimming compare with other aerobic workouts? | Outside Online
    Fire Chief - Pointed Workout

    (yes, I realize they're non-academic)

  16. #15
    evolution is offline I love me some Mreik
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karky View Post
    ofcource i argument my point. But by all means, go out and run, im not saying its inefficient.

    sorry if you think i agrue too much, seems theres more people here who think so. maybe i should just shut my mouth and go home?
    No. People should be less sensitive on a public forum. Getting upset at someone over the intraweb is.........

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