Q: I’m dropping weight, but my body fat percentage is the same. How much cardio is needed for optimal cardiovascular health without sacrificing muscle?
Jim says: The Centers for Disease Control guideline is 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise for five days of the week. I tend to agree with that. If you’re losing muscle from a 30-minute session on the treadmill at moderate intensity, then you aren’t consuming enough calories. For a normal gym guy (with his diet in check) looking to gain muscle or maintain his current body composition, 30 minutes of cardio at a moderate intensity should not cost you muscle and should improve your vascular health.
Q: How long of a break should you take if you think you’re overtraining?
Jay says: We are of the mindset that you need just enough stimulus to force the adaptive changes we’re looking for from the body, such as muscle hypertrophy. Finding this out, we ultimately try to make that cycle happen as often as possible. Let’s break that down: If you work chest and do just enough to force your body to repair and adapt for the next time and do that more times a year than say a brutal workout, which demands a much longer recovery rate, we believe that will allow yourself more muscle gain over a given time. To put it simply, you need to customize volume to your current recovery rate. As your ability t