I am a 21 year old male weighting 99kg. I already have my diet managed, but it is a more weight loss orientated diet currently (I understand about needing to eat more to gain muscle etc.)

I am currently doing cardio with a duration of 60-90 minutes.
How can I incorporate about 45-60 minutes of weight training in my program to meet my overall goal of becoming lean, built and building a better overall fitness?

  • 1
    This question has been asked before, here and here. I don't see how the answers to those questions don't answer yours, please provide more information if you see a difference.
    – Baarn
    Dec 7, 2012 at 10:28
  • I try to explain further: You are asking for a personal recommendation (which is not OK on most .SE sites, but is totally fine here), you are asking a mixture of two questions. Cardio before weights? and Should I focus on weights or cardio to achieve my personal goals?. I think the first one has been answered in the questions I linked above. It might be better to narrow the scope of the question down to your personal goals.
    – Baarn
    Dec 7, 2012 at 10:37
  • thank you for your comment suggestions, I have made edits to improve the scope of the question.
    – Sam Street
    Dec 7, 2012 at 10:47
  • I edited your question, if you are unhappy with the changes feel free to revert them or edit it again.
    – Baarn
    Dec 7, 2012 at 11:18
  • Not an answer to how to add weights to a workout program including 60-90 minutes of steady state cardio, but: one strongly recommends you look into combining strength and conditioning doing some circuit training instead of one then the other.
    – Affe
    Dec 7, 2012 at 22:50

3 Answers 3


You might want to try one (or more) of these alternatives:

Barbell complexes

This is what I use for warmup. My favorite is the bear complex. The video is worth a million words, but in short, you start with the bar in front of you. You power clean it into a front squat position, do a front squat, push press it into a back squat position, do a back squat, then push press it back to the floor in front of you.

I use a relatively light weight, because I do typical 8-12 rep weightlifting exercises afterwards. However, you can use slightly heavier loads to mix cardio and weight-lifting at the same time.


In circuit training, you do one set of one exercise, then immediately do another set of a different exercise, etc, until you're back to the first exercise, then repeat. For example, you might do one set of squats, then one set of bench press, then one set of pull-ups, then one set of standing press, then squats again, and so on, until you've done 3 sets on each exercise.

Typical weights+cardio solution

Another alternative is to do a typical weights training program which lasts 45-60 mins per workout, like Starting Strength, and add 30-45 mins of cardio after. This separates the weights and the cardio parts, but it's what most people do.

  • As far as barbell complexes, I'll just add that I've left myself completely drained by doing Cosgrove's Evil 8 Dec 7, 2012 at 18:17

It's not a very scientific answer, but I hope it answers your question all the same. You need to do whatever you most want to improve on first. If you do cardio for 60 minutes before working out, your muscles will be fatigued and you'll have consumed much of your body's energy reserves, and your weightlifting will suffer. The same applies if you lift first, and then run.

Strategies that others have used would include splitting your workout up by time of day (run in the morning, lift weights at night), or splitting up by days (lift weights M/W/F, run on T/Th/Sa). Both of these options will have an effect on your recovery, however.

I would encourage you to just experiment, and see which kind of programs helps you the most. There's no one right answer to this question.


It is far more usual to do heavy work first and fat loss-oriented cardio afterwards.

There are two good reasons for this:

  • Heavy lifting is dangerous when fatigued. It is best to do it while sharp and fresh.

  • The goal of lifting is to force a bodily adaptation. In order to do this, you must be putting maximum effort into the lifts. It is impossible to put maximum effort into your lifts if you've depleted your glycogen stores with cardio.

Meanwhile, cardio is not as significantly impacted by having trained first.

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