You've really inspired me to start losing weight with your youtube videos. I am your age and it is great to have someone young on youtube that's such an inspiration. I had a question about cardio. I am 6'8" and started the summer at 290lbs and am currently at 265lbs. I have been running the last couple months usually every other day about 2 miles. I lost alot of weight by running but I've always worried if it burned muscle. As i've been researching online I read alot of articles that say running and other high intensity cardio makes your body use energy from everywhere: fat, carbs, and muscle.
Here's an interesting article on it:http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/bobchic3.htm. It seems the best cardio to burn fat and conserve muscle is to go on a piece of cardio equipment at a moderate pace for 20-40 minutes. I personally go on the treadmill 3.0 mph at a 7.5 incline for 25 minutes after lifting.
I wanted to get your opinion on it and what your advice would be. I want to get down to about 240 lbs and not lose any muscle in the process.
In my opinion and in the opinion of many others only low intensity cardio should be done after weight training because it has been shown in some studies that it preserves muscle mass and is more likely to burn calories from fat. Other studies have shown that jogging is not good while looking to lose weight because it can burn muscle for energy which is why i personally do not jog. Instead of jogging i like to do high intensity interval training (hiit) because it has been shown to burn calories from carbohydrates and not muscle tissue.
The best hiit program i have found would be something like sprinting for 30-60 seconds then walking for 45-90 seconds and repeating the process for about 15-20 minutes. No matter what you do however you will lose some muscle mass in the process of losing weight. However, there are a few ways to decrease the amount of muscle mass lost during a cutting phase. These include eating a large amount of protein(1-1.5g per lb of bodyweight) so your body always has an ample amount of amino acids (building blocks of protein and muscle tissue) to feed your muscles.
Another way is to lift weights because this sends the signal to the brain that your muscles are being used frequently so it would be detrimental to break it down because it would make you weaker. The final way would be to supplement with branch chain amino acids (bcaa’s) during lifting and cardio sessions because these have shown to decrease muscle catabolism.
Tony isn't a licensed nutritionist yet, so he can't give anyone advice on what to do. Please consult your doctor for his professional opinion on a diet/nutrition program that will work for you.
Tony's blog is a journal of his experiences and what has worked for him. He lists general guidelines and suggestions only. He is NOT a professional.