Finding the right balance of cardio exercise and strength training is key when it comes to putting on lean muscle. Do too much, and you risk over-training and losing your hard-earned muscle. On the other hand, if you don’t up the intensity and put the time in, your muscle gains will be minimal.
Stick to two to three days of cardio per week. Focus on shorter, higher-intensity sessions, such as 25 minutes of HIIT.
You need to be hitting the weights at least three days per week. How you structure your workouts and the amount of days you devote to strength training depends on your current fitness level.
- Beginner - 2 to 3 days per week of strength training (full-body each session)
- Intermediate - 3 to 4 days per week of strength training (split up workout by body part or upper/lower body)
- Advanced - 4 to 5 days per week of strength training (an advanced exerciser might structure their week with three days on, one day off)
Cardio exercises and strength training both play a significant role in targeting weight loss and increasing muscle size. Finding the right balance of the two will depend on your individual goals, how quickly you want to achieve them, and the amount of time you can commit to exercising.