It’s a long-discussed topic, but when attempting to lose weight, is it better to opt for cardio over weights?

Some say it’s cardio while others claim weights are better, so what the right answer.

Scientists have looked at the total number of calories burned when a person weighing 73kg jogged for 30 minutes at a moderate pace and found they lost 250 calories.

But if they ran at a faster pace, then they could burn 365 calories in just 30 minutes.

And if they did just weights for the same amount of time, then they would lose between 130-220 calories, suggesting that cardio is the better option for weight loss.

Although this would appear to be the clear answer, scientists actually found that people who did weights actually continue to burn calories hours afterwards.

“Muscle is more metabolically active than fat, so the more you gain, the more calories you’ll burn – and the more likely you are to keep fat off,” exercise physiologist Dr Leigh Breen tells Women’s Health.

Also women are said to lose more body fat from weight training. A study performed by the University of Alabama showed that women lost more belly fat from weight training than cardio.

Weight training is also ideal for improving your stress levels and aiding a better sleep and reducing cortisol which can lead to weight gain.

So which one is better? Cardio or weights? If you’re wanting to reduce fat loss and build lean muscle, then weight training is your best option.

That said, cardio is probably ideal when you first start your weight loss journey and you want to shed kilos, improve cardiovascular health and uncover some of that muscle, you may have started to sculpt with your weight training.

Ideally, you want to do a mix of both so you can benefit from both.

“Combining cardio (anything that elevates the heart rate) and weights/resistance training helps to support a strong, fit and healthy body alongside the correct nutrition for your lifestyle and your goals,” PT Laura Hoggins told The Sun.

“In my opinion, there is literally no disadvantages to being strong, so if you want a strong, lean, healthy and defined physique that will support your functional needs, do both!

“That means that you can run to catch the bus and be strong enough to pull it too!”

With that in mind, look at starting your fitness schedule with 3 cardio sessions a week and two strength resistance sessions to burn calories and define muscle.