Recently spiking in popularity have been challenges to do 1 hour of cardio a day to lose weight- but does it work?
Yes, doing 1 hour of cardio a day to lose weight is a GREAT WAY to lose weight. I lose around 6 pounds a month doing this! Not only does it provide tons of health benefits, but it also allows you to eat a lot more food and still lose a lot of weight- making sure you don’t have to starve yourself to see that fat disappear.
Let’s talk about this more in-depth- and share exactly what workouts you should be doing to maximize that fat loss.
1 Hour of Cardio a Day Burns Tons of FAT
Most of us want to lose that dreaded fat on our body that’s hiding our abs and muscles.
1 hour of cardio a day actually burns a TON of fat. This is because when you do longer cardio your body pulls energy from your fat reserves.
If you do quick cardio, your body generally tends to use glucose, or sugar in your blood for quick energy. This comes from carbohydrates.
But, we don’t really want that- we want our fat to be burned. And when you do that longer cardio, again, your body uses your fat reserves. Typically, the ‘gold standard’ for this fat burn is 30-45 minutes, but one hour still does the trick.
The reason your body ends up burning fat is quite simple. For the first 15-20 minutes of your run, your body will primarily use carbohydrates in your blood to power your run. But, it will burn most of that up and have to start burning fat for that energy.
This is why it is important to keep pushing past that 20 minute mark and maximize that fat burn.
1 Hour of Cardio a Day Lets You Eat Way More, And Still Lose Weight
Let’s be honest here, losing weight is hard. Really hard- if losing weight was easy, all of us would be shredded and probably not even reading this article.
But, doing 1 hour of cardio a day lets you eat way more and still lose weight. Let me explain.
To lose weight, you need to eat less calories than you eat in a day. That’s easier said than done, however.
Most people end up having to eat under 2,000 calories or so, and in today’s society that isn’t so easy considering a value meal at a fast food restaurant will typically be 1500 calories.
- Read: Best Items to Order from McDonald’s on a Diet
- Read: Best Items to Order from Taco Bell on a Diet
- Read: Best Item sto Order from In-N-Out on a Diet
So- to combat this, you need to eat SUPER healthy or eat very little. Neither of these options are necessarily easy- but there’s a different way, and it’s actually done with cardio.
You see, when you do an hour of cardio a day, you burn a TON of calories. Remember, to lose weight- you need to eat under that calorie number, and now that calorie number has increased.
For instance, if you do an hour of cardio a day, instead of being able to eat 2,000 calories and lose weight- you’ll be able to eat 2,500 calories and still lose weight. That’s actually a lot when you think about it. That’s basically an extra big mac at McDonald’s you’ll be able to eat without gaining fat.
The truth is, most people are eating around 2,000 calories a day naturally with how our diets are. That’s why so many people end up in that ‘skinny-fat’ body phase, because we are just weirdly gaining weight and burning fat randomly making our bodies look like a mix of athletic and fat.
The skinny-fat phase is the one most people struggle getting out of, just because the calorie number can be so difficult to figure out and adjust to. But, doing 1 hour of cardio a day almost ‘hacks’ this system. It lets you eat more, and lose more weight without having to almost ‘starve’ yourself.
So- you get to eat more, and still lose weight. 1 Hour of Cardio a day sure has its benefits.
1 Hour of Cardio a Day Has TONS Of Health Benefits
While all of us like to lose weight so we can look good- our health is a big reason for it too. I used to be really fat and I just always felt so sluggish and low energy, but losing weight did a ton for my health.
Good news for you, 1 hour of cardio a day has tons of health benefits. Let’s cover a few!
Cardiovascular health benefits!
- 1 Hour of Cardio a day is one of the best ways to keep your heart in shape. When you work out, your heart builds cardiac muscle to ‘perfuse’ your body better. Doing cardio every now and then is a good way to build that strength, but doing longer cardio consistently will ensure your heart is at its’ peak health.
Lowers Risk of Heart Disease
- Doing 1 Hour of Cardio a day lowers the risk of heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, STILL. Doing cardio severely reduces the risk of heart disease in many ways. This includes lowering your blood pressure, strengthening your cardiac muscle, et cetera.
Lowers Risk of Diabetes
- Diabetes is a disease that has started becoming very common worldwide. Doing 1 hour of cardio a day also lowers your risk of diabetes. In fact, one study suggests that exercise is more effective than actual preventative medication for diabetes. I think that says it all, just simple exercise is way more effective than taking medicine to try and prevent it from happening. And this isn’t a small decrease either- you HALF your chance of developing type 2 diabetes if you’re at risk for it, according to the study.
Lowers blood pressure
- We hear it all the time, high blood pressure is bad. But why? Real quick- a higher blood pressure means there is more pressure on the ‘blood highway’ system of your heart. When that happens, ‘fatty deposits’ form and can cause blockages, tears, et cetera. Generally, this leads to a heart attack as eventually the highway becomes blocked due to debris.
- This is really bad- so we want to stay at a healthy blood pressure that our physician tells us to stay at. If you’ve been to the doctor and they’ve told you that you need to lower your blood pressure, doing an hour of cardio a day is a phenomenal way to do this and get that blood pressure down. (This really helped me get my blood pressure down during nursing school!)
Lowers stress levels in body
- I personally can ‘feel’ stress in my body, and other people can too. It’s just this weird hyperactive uneasiness you get, and I HATE it. I think most people agree with me in this regard. Nobody likes being stressed.
- Doing an hour of cardio a day is a great way to lower stress. An hour of cardio a day releases tons of endorphins (feel good hormone) into your body cutting down the amount of cortisol (stress hormone).
- Plus, you get time to yourself to just unwind and think while you’re doing cardio. This is great therapy for yourself and is kind of like ‘meditating’ in a sense.
- None of us like losing sleep, or having a bad night of sleep. Doing an hour of cardio a day really does put you to sleep- and gives you GOOD sleep. I’m not the best at explaining this as I’m not a sleep expert myself, but this study by the Sleep Foundation should help explain all the science if you’re interested.
Better body composition
- This is probably the main reason you’re actually doing this- to burn fat and gain muscle. Doing an hour of cardio a day will preserve muscle, burn fat, and encourage muscle growth and discourage fat gain. What I’m trying to get at is- your body will look much better.
1 Hour of Cardio a Day Boosts Metabolism
Here’s one people love- a metabolism boost. While it’s nice to know that doing 1 hour of cardio a day usually adds 500 calories to your daily caloric intake (ie: the amount of food you can eat and still lose weight)- you also get around a 48 hour metabolism boost.
So, you really get a two-factor approach to losing weight using this method. You get that two-day increased calorie burn, and you get that right away calorie burn.
This stuff is awesome.
- Read: Is Fasted Cardio a Myth?
Average Weight Loss You’ll See Doing 1 Hour of Cardio a Day
Now that I’ve convinced you of the many benefits of doing 1 hour of cardio a day- you might be wondering what the average weight loss you’ll is?
First of all, I have to say- it depends on your weight always. If you weigh 500 pounds, you can lose a lot more weight than other people can. Likewise, if you weigh 100 pounds- not so much.
So, for this, I will be assuming we are at a “standard BMI”/weight- even though this really doesn’t apply to most of us.
So, the average weight loss you’ll see doing 1 hour of cardio a day is roughly 4-6 pounds of fat a month. That isn’t bad at all, and that’s even a low estimate by my standards, I see people losing even more weight depending on their weight.
I’ve seen some bigger people absolutely SHRED fat in a few months. And I’ve even seen some of my smaller bodybuilding friends really shred that fat down too to get that muscle popping.
At the end of the day, you can see very good, consistent results with this.
I always say- it’s almost hard to gain weight when you do one hour of cardio a day. It’s like, you’ve burned so many calories already it’s hard to outeat that.
1 Hour of Cardio Before and After (1 Hour of Cardio Everyday Results)
It probably will convince you more to try this stuff if you see some real before and after pictures rather than here me ramble on- so let’s take a look:
Superhero Jacked is a famous YouTuber that tried this challenge and had good results- check it out here!
NykeFaller also did this experiment and got great results too!
What Type of Cardio Should I Do To Maximize Weight Loss?
To maximize weight loss, I assume you want the most fat loss instead of general weight loss (muscle loss, etc).
The type of cardio you should do to maximize this weight loss is “moderate-intensity-long-term” cardio, ie: jogging for 45 minutes. This is because your body burns up all the sugar in your blood after that 20 minute mark or so and starts burning fat to keep you going.
This is the best type of cardio for weight loss. You can also try HIIT workouts, but they work a little different and don’t have as effective fat-burning properties as moderate-intensity stuff does.
Work Your Way Up To 1 Hour A Day, Don’t Start There
Please don’t try to start doing 1 hour of cardio a day RIGHT AWAY- work up to it! Start by doing 15 minutes a day, then 20, then 25, and so forth. Increasing and decreasing it as you gain your endurance.
Starting at 1 hour a day is a bad idea. It may even cause health issues. Remember, always consult with a physician before starting a workout program, especially one like this.
Conclusion of Doing 1 Hour of Cardio a Day
So the verdict is in, doing 1 hour of cardio a day is:
- Good for fat loss!
- Good for your health
- Great for body composition
- Good for keeping off weight
- A great way to reduce stress
So- what are you waiting for? Get out there and start working! Me and my buddies do 1 hour of cardio a day regularly, and while it’s tough, it gets you in shape.