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The Fit 5: Cardio

Our fitness expert answers your questions about endurance training.

For all of our fans who shoot us questions on our Facebook page, this one is for you. Each week, we will tap into our pool of editors and experts to help with any questions or challenges you are having with your fitness regimen.

This week, Sean Hyson C.S.C.S., Group Training Director for Muscle & Fitness and Men's Fitness magazines, answers questions about about endurance training and cardio.

Be sure to read up on all of Sean’s articles here on MensFitness.com or in Men’s Fitness and Muscle & Fitness magazines each month.

You can also catch Sean on Twitter

1) Cardio and Bulking — asked by Darrell Edge

If you do a lot of cardio, does that limit your ability to build up muscle mass?

“Yes. It burns calories that would otherwise go to your muscles and creates a hormonal environment where muscle can be broken down for energy. If you choose to do long duration cardio, keep the intensity at the pace of a brisk walk.”

2) Elliptical Machine Work — asked by Antony Piras

Is an elliptical machine really efficient when increasing the level every five minutes for a total 35 minutes?

"Any machine can be efficient. Using the elliptical may not be quite as calorie-consuming as running, but it will save your joints from stress."

3) Cardio Techniques — asked by Tracy McKittrick

If you do too much steady-state and neglect high-intensity intervals, will it cause your body to maintain fat?

"What happens is your body gets more efficient at the steady-state work and finds new ways of burning less fat to do it. As a result, you don’t get leaner. You need to mix duration work with intervals for the best results, but don’t forget your diet."

4) Interval Training Examples — asked by Praveen Pardeshi

What are examples of interval cardio training specifically for a treadmill?

"Run hard for 30 seconds—the fastest pace you can maintain. Then walk around four minutes. Repeat for 30 minutes."

5) Cardio-friendly Foods — asked by Jake Fitz

Are there any specific types of food you should eat when you're doing cardio?

“Not really. If it’s a very long session (you’re training for a marathon) you could eat some fast-digesting carbs during the training, like bananas, for energy. If you’re trying to get leaner, have some protein before and after but limit carbs."

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