Discovering the best cardio workout can be important, regardless of whether your goal is to lose weight, get fit, or keep up great health. Among the top forms of exercise, running and cycling are often debated as the winner. That said, which one is actually deserving of the top spot?
If you had to choose only running or only cycling, which one should it be? Should you be training to run your first marathon or preparing for your next cycling race? Consider the following as you decide which one is the best cardio workout for you.
It should be noted that no single workout is perfect for everyone. If you’re trying to find the best cardio workout, keep in mind that individual factors come into play. While cycling may be perfect for your friend, there may be reasons that it is ideal for him, while you might be better suited to running
Therefore, as much as there is a lot of advantage to both types of exercise, the best cardio workout is the one you’ll be able to do well on a regular basis. Your goals will also play an important role in deciding which one will be best for you.
On the side of running, a University of Birmingham study showed that when running or cycling at the same perceived effort level, runners will burn more fat from around their middles than cyclists. On the other hand, a Stephen F. Austin State University study showed that cyclists preserve more muscle mass when they cycle and weight train than they would by running.
Running is good for both the body and the mind. Therefore, while you may be looking for the best cardio workout, by choosing running, you’ll also do yourself some good in terms of your mental health, according to the University of Arizona’s research. Running affects the same part of the brain known for boosting multitasking, planning and decision-making skills.
Cycling, on the other hand, not only works as a great exercise, but it is also easy to work into your life if you use it as an environmentally friendly mode of transportation. It is also easier on your joints.
Running is the most common cause of shin splints. It is extremely important to run properly if you choose this as the best cardio workout for your needs.
Cycling also comes with risks of injury, as improperly positioned handlebars and seats can lead to genital tissue damage. Find out how to set up your bike before you start to ride.