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Can You Do Cardio After Your Chest Workout? (Solved!)

Cardio can add some great benefits to your training program.

One of the biggest issues many gym-goers face though is finding the time to fit it into their training week.

Trying to properly train all your muscle groups and then do good amounts of cardio on top can seem like a real challenge.

That’s why, in this article, we are looking at whether you can do cardio after your chest workout or not.

We discuss the pros and cons of doing cardio after your chest workout, the amount of time you might want to leave between finishing chest and starting cardio, and also whether it might be better to do cardio before your chest workout.

We also include some of the best forms of cardio you can do after your chest workout to get as many benefits as possible.

Woman and man running on treadmills in a gym

Can You Do Cardio After Your Chest Workout?

Yes, you can do cardio after your chest workout.

After a chest workout, your upper body will be tired, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do cardio afterward.

As long as you have enough energy (and motivation) to have an effective cardio session after your chest workout, there’s not many reasons why you can’t do so.

You’ll need to keep in mind that a lot of your upper body might not be at its best after a heavy chest session, but, if you do the right forms of cardio, you can have a great cardio session after training your chest.

Benefits of Cardio After Your Chest Workout

You Can Burn Some Extra Fat

When you start training, your body uses its glycogen stores as energy before using fat as fuel.

This is important to remember as you might think that doing 30 minutes of cardio results in 30 minutes of fat burning when, actually, this isn’t the case at all.

Until you have burned through your glycogen stores, you’ll unlikely burn much fat (or any).

When doing a heavy chest session, you’ll likely burn through a lot of the glycogen you have stored.

This means that when you start your cardio, you’ll start burning fat for fuel much quicker.

Even burning a little bit more fat each session can end up making a big difference to how much progress you make toward your fitness goals.

You Can Get Even More Benefits From Your Gym Session

As time restraints play a big part in many gym-goers’ ability to train as much as they would like, getting as much out of each and every workout can make a huge difference in moving toward their training goals.

While a well planned and effective chest workout will certainly bring you both short and long term benefits, doing cardio after your chest workout can give you even more positive outcomes.

Increased fat burn, increased heart health, more endorphins being released, and increased blood flow are just some of the benefits you can extend by doing cardio after your chest workout.

You can get more benefits from your gym session without having to increase the number of times you go to the gym each week.

Drawbacks of Cardio After Your Chest Workout


Woman lying on floor after exercise resting her arm on her head

After a chest workout, you’ll likely be quite fatigued.

You likely would’ve lifted some heavy weights and done some big, compound movements. This can take its toll on your body and you can be left feeling pretty tired by the end of it.

Trying to do an effective cardio session after a tiring chest session can be a real challenge if you’re already feeling fatigued.

Imagine being in the gym for 45 – 60 minutes and working your chest to a very high intensity only to still have at least 30 minutes of cardio left to do afterward.

Not only can this have a detrimental impact on your overall performance, it can severely dampen your motivation levels too.

Motivation is one of the most important elements to a successful training program, so anything that has the potential to reduce your motivation could be something to avoid.

It Can Increase The Length Of Your Workout

Your chest workout could be up to an hour in length on its own.

If you then want to add some cardio to the end of it, you’ll likely have to increase the amount of time you spend in the gym by at least half an hour.

While this might not be too much of an issue for some gym-goers, for others, they may already have a very limited time to spend in the gym due to other commitments.

If you’re working to a very strict time frame, doing cardio after your chest workout might not be the best idea and it might not even be possible for you at all.

Should You Do Cardio After Your Chest Workout?

This is a question that seems to have had different answers over the years.

There have been times when it was thought that doing cardio after a weight lifting session would cancel out some of the gains you made during the workout.

There have been times when people thought doing cardio before a resistance workout was best and there have been times when doing cardio after resistance training was believed to be the right thing to do.

While there is still some disagreement, as a general rule, most fitness experts say that you should do cardio after resistance training (like your chest workout) to get the most benefit from it.

That being said, it will depend on your fitness goals as to whether doing cardio after your chest workout is completely right for you or not.

How Long After Your Chest Session Should You Begin Cardio?

This will ultimately depend on the amount of time you have available to spend in the gym, the equipment available to you when you need it, and how fatigued you are after your chest session.

Some people find going straight into cardio after their chest workout works very well for them while others take a short break of up to 15 minutes before starting their cardio session.

Finding what works best for you will help you get the most out of your chest workouts and your cardio sessions too.

Is It Safe To Do Cardio After Your Chest Workout?

A road with the words Safety First painted on in yellow paint next to double yellow lines

It’s completely safe to do cardio after your chest workout providing that you’re free from injury and you have the fitness levels appropriate to do so.

You may have to start by keeping your cardio sessions short before gradually extending them as you move closer toward your fitness goals.

How Long Should Your Cardio Session Be?

Effective cardio sessions could be as short as 10 minutes or they could be as long as an hour or more.

If you’re doing cardio after your chest workout, it will probably be best to keep it somewhere between 10 and 30 minutes in length.

This will give you the best chance of keeping your motivation up and it will reduce how much additional time gets added onto your gym session.

Is It Better To Do Cardio After Your Chest Workout or Before?

There are arguments both ways on this one but, as a general rule, it’s usually better to do cardio after your chest workout.

This isn’t always the case though and your fitness goals will certainly have an impact on things but, for most of us, cardio after chest is best.

Best Forms of Cardio After Your Chest Workout


A woman riding a stationary bike

Using a spin bike or a regular stationary bike can be a good form of cardio to do after your chest workout.

Your legs should be pretty fresh so they can work hard and the muscles that worked during your chest session won’t be needed too much while you’re doing it either.


A rowing machine works a lot of your body.

This can help you burn extra calories and fat after your chest workout.

As rowing tends to be more back orientated than chest, you should find it a good choice of cardio after a chest session.

That’s all for this article, but can you do triceps after biceps?

Hope this helped!


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