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Is cardio right for me?


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I am currently 143 pounds at 5'10".... But I still have some belly fat. I plan to do 20 minutes of HIIT 2 days per week. Is this advisable...will it help shed the belly fat? Or will it burn muscle? I am already low body weight and my objective is to increase it to 160 pounds. Should cardio be avoided?

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Mixing in some HIIT is good in my opinion for building functional muscle mass, kicking up your heart rate a bit and a bit less calorie consuming (a little any way) than doing full on cardio running, aerobics, etc.

 

BUT probably won't just target some fat loss in you middle, but all over...lean you up - which sounds like isn't really your objective.

 

Belly fat can be a symptom of some nutritional changes. In particular, carbs, but not just carbs in general, but both what are the sources of carbs, and when you're eating them....

 

So...bit more info on your diet might be useful...

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I am currently 143 pounds at 5'10".... But I still have some belly fat. I plan to do 20 minutes of HIIT 2 days per week. Is this advisable...will it help shed the belly fat? Or will it burn muscle? I am already low body weight and my objective is to increase it to 160 pounds. Should cardio be avoided?

 

HIIT indeed well ramp up your metabolism, however HIIT is "HIGH IMPACT" high intensity exercise, so if you value the well being of the joints and connective tissues, i strongly recommend avoiding it.

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Mixing in some HIIT is good in my opinion for building functional muscle mass, kicking up your heart rate a bit and a bit less calorie consuming (a little any way) than doing full on cardio running, aerobics, etc.

 

BUT probably won't just target some fat loss in you middle, but all over...lean you up - which sounds like isn't really your objective.

 

Belly fat can be a symptom of some nutritional changes. In particular, carbs, but not just carbs in general, but both what are the sources of carbs, and when you're eating them....

 

So...bit more info on your diet might be useful...

whole wheat bread and rice....maybe this is forcing the body to store fat even though I am underweight?

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I am currently 143 pounds at 5'10".... But I still have some belly fat. I plan to do 20 minutes of HIIT 2 days per week. Is this advisable...will it help shed the belly fat? Or will it burn muscle? I am already low body weight and my objective is to increase it to 160 pounds. Should cardio be avoided?

 

HIIT indeed well ramp up your metabolism, however HIIT is "HIGH IMPACT" high intensity exercise, so if you value the well being of the joints and connective tissues, i strongly recommend avoiding it.

 

either way I think it is better to avoid cardio for now. 143 seems too low. Maybe at 160....

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My friend's little brother was once around 162 with the same exact height and he also tried losing the last of his belly fat. He would wrap garbage bags around his midriff and run several kilometers each morning to try and sweat it all off. He also did those 12 minute high intensity exercises. No matter how much he tried, it still wouldn't go away. Eventually he realized that his eating habits were killing him (note: he wasn't a vegan) and decided to give up on ketchup, bread, cheese, etc. 8 months later he lost 20 pounds and more or less didn't have those love handles anymore. I don't know if this helps you in any way.

 

Also, weight loss generally causes you to lose water weight and muscle mass before it targets your body fat. Look at those long distance runners vs the ones who just do the 100m or 200m dash. I find that trying to do bodybuilding with too much running can be detrimental to the physique. Of course, some will disagree with me.

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To take an evolutionary perspective, the body has learned to be very efficient, when we do steady state activity, the body knows it doesnt need its fast twitch fibers and you "lose" the premium quality muscle fibers. Concrete example... Look at sprinters vs long distance / endurance athletes. Fat loss is almost entirely setting up a proper hormonal environment, with insulin being the main hormone that governs fat gain AND loss.

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