Fat Burning vs Cardio: Difference and Comparison

In today’s world, people are conscious of their health and have set targets for the type of body they want. They prefer to be in proper shape and maintain their health to prevent themselves from being sick and ill.

People do both fat-burning and cardio under the guidance of a proper mentor.

Key Takeaways

  1. Fat-burning exercises aim to burn fat and improve metabolic health, while cardio exercises aim to improve cardiovascular health and endurance.
  2. Fat-burning exercises are low-intensity and long-duration, while cardio exercises are high-intensity and short-duration.
  3. Fat-burning exercises include walking, jogging, and cycling, while cardio exercises include HIIT and sprinting.

Fat-Burning vs Cardio

Fat burning is a type of exercise carried out to lose weight, and consists medium intensity workouts, a heart rate maintained at 50 to 60 beats per minute, and a low burn of calories. Cardio is a set of activities done to stay in shape and includes high intensity exercises. It burns a lot of calories.

Fat Burning vs Cardio

Fat-burning is the exercise done by people for losing weight and have a good lifestyle.

In this exercise, the people mostly do medium intensity workouts and the heart rate is maintained at 50-60 beats per minute and does not leave an after-effect or burning sensation.

The overall burn of calories is low. 

Cardio is another set of activities done by people to maintain fitness and stay in shape.

In this type of set, the exercises are of high intensity which helps in burning carbohydrates and also increases the number of calories burned during the workout. The heartbeat is more than 60 beats per minute.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonFat-Burning Cardio
IntensityThe intensity of the exercises done is moreover between low to medium and is less exhausting.The intensity of the exercises done varies from upper-middle to high and can be very exhausting.
Heart rate The heart rate is between 50-60 heartbeats per minute and has a minute differenceThe heart rate is comparatively more and regulates between 70-80 and is tiring.
Main energy burnedThe amount of energy burned is due to the stored fats and you can work afterwards.The amount of energy burned is due to the stored carbohydrates and glycogen which helps more in reducing weight.
The calories burnedIt is a misconception that it reduces more weight but the weight is lost due to the number of carbohydrates burned which is less.Cardio helps in reducing more weight because it burns more carbohydrates which levels up the number of calories which is lost.
Burning sensationDue to it being a low-intensity workout there is no burning sensation and a normal routine can be continued just after exercise is complete.Being a high-intensity workout, it leaves a burning sensation on the body and for some time you need to rest.
Common ExercisesSome of the common exercises which are done during the workout are chest press, lunges, shoulder press, etc.Some of the common exercises done during the workout sessions are jump squats, jump lunges, rope jumping, etc.

What is Fat-Burning?

Fat-burning is one of the most common sets of exercises done by people to stay fit. Most of the time they are done to reduce weight especially of the belly, hip region and also helps in maintaining proper stamina. 

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The routine which can be followed with some of the tricks is as follows.

You can start the training by doing some strength-building exercises which include pushups, presses, crunches for more than 30 minutes and then also reserved yourself for nutritious food and avoid junk and refined fats like vanaspati ghee.

You can also work on meditation which helps in building focus. They focus on the belly, hip and other parts where fat needs to be lost.

The calories burned is not high as they are calculated by the number of carbohydrates burned during the exercise and they burn stored fats.

The amount of calories burned is directly proportional to the amount of weight lost. They are also not proper for body-building and are used as warmups.

They can also cause some other side effects like anxiety and sleep deprivation which is most common as well as mood swings.

The common exercises which are done under this are chest press, lunges, shoulder press, etc. 

fat burning

What is Cardio?

Cardio is a set of exercises done to lose weight as well as used for body-building. They are very good exercises for enduring heart and lung capacities.

They are also helpful for people who want to lose weight in a shorter period. It uses more than 70% of the total heart rate and overdoing these can cause some serious problems.

Some exercises which can be done at home in this category are jumping ropes, jumping jacks, burpees. The duration for each activity is also set and can be started from 10mins each day and vary to 30mins.

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After this, the workout may be followed by running on the treadmill and high-speed walks.

The exercises leave a burning sensation after the workout which individually means that more energy is released even after the set is done. 

The energy release is accurately due to the burning of stored carbohydrates which directly affects the number of calories burned. Usually, the number of calories burned is high and the weight loss is more in comparison to fat-burning exercises.

The exercises which are included are rope jumping, jump squats, jump lunges, etc. and can be tiring along with burning sensation may affect the normal daily work for a short period after the set is done.

The side effect is that there can be muscle loss, you are more prone to injuries if over-exercised, mood swings, etc.


Main Differences Between Fat-Burning and Cardio

  1. The intensity of both workouts is the polar opposite. Fat-burning includes low-intensity exercises, whereas cardio includes high-intensity exercises and can be tiring and exhausting.
  2. The workout session for fat-burning is around 30 mins, in which exercises are done for cutting the fat of the hips and belly, whereas in cardio, the warmup session is for 30 minutes and at the starting starts from 10 minutes and continues with running.
  3. During the fat-burning set, the amount of calories burned is quite less because the carbohydrates burned are less, whereas, in cardio, the number of calories burned is higher because it deals with the loss of carbohydrates.
  4. The energy released comprises the fact that the work done is right. In fat-burning, there is active burning of stored fats, especially around the belly and hips, whereas, in cardio, the energy released is due to the burning of carbohydrates and glycogen, which are stored in access.
  5. The common exercises for fat-burning are lunges, chest presses, and shoulder presses, whereas cardio includes activities like pull-ups, rope jumps, jump squats, jump lunges, etc.
Difference Between Fat Burning and Cardio
  1. https://www.pharexmedics.com/studies/the-science-behind-ketogenic-diet


Last Updated : 14 October, 2023

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8 thoughts on “Fat Burning vs Cardio: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The comparison between fat-burning and cardio exercises is enlightening. It further solidifies the significance of these exercises in one’s fitness journey. It’s essential to understand the impact of the intensity and duration of the exercises on the body and overall health.

  2. The comparison of fat-burning and cardio exercises underscores the need for a well-rounded exercise regimen that encompasses various aspects of physical fitness. Understanding the characteristics and impacts of each exercise type is essential for maximizing health benefits.

  3. The detailed explanation of fat-burning and cardio exercises reflects the significance of tailoring one’s fitness regimen to individual health goals. Recognizing the importance of targeted exercises that align with specific fitness objectives is pivotal for overall well-being.

  4. The fat-burning and cardio exercises described here are instrumental in promoting overall well-being. Developing a balanced exercise routine that incorporates both types of exercises can contribute to an improved lifestyle and physical health.

  5. This comprehensive breakdown of fat-burning and cardio exercises provides valuable insights into the impact of each type of exercise on the body and metabolism. It’s imperative to recognize the varying effects of low-intensity fat-burning and high-intensity cardio workouts.

  6. It’s evident that both fat-burning and cardio exercises play distinct roles in enhancing fitness and health. This elucidating article highlights the multifaceted nature of exercise and the importance of a comprehensive approach to physical well-being.

  7. The distinction between fat-burning and cardio exercises is clearly explained. However, a more in-depth analysis of the long-term effects and benefits of each type of exercise would be beneficial.

  8. Fat-burning and cardio exercises are both crucial to maintaining a healthy body. I incorporate both types of exercises into my routine to ensure I cover all aspects of my fitness, including fat-burning, endurance, and cardiovascular health.


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