Arnold’s Secret to Chiselled Physique: Cardio and Weightlifting

Arnold Schwarzenegger is an iconic name in the world of bodybuilding and fitness. His incredible physique, awe-inspiring strength, and dedication to the sport have inspired countless people to take up weightlifting. But what was Arnold’s secret to achieving such a chiselled and muscular body? The answer lies in two things: cardio and weightlifting.

The Benefits of Cardio for Weightlifting

Cardiovascular exercise, commonly known as cardio, is any form of exercise that increases your heart rate and helps to improve your cardiovascular health. While most people associate weightlifting with building muscle mass and strength, cardio plays a significant role in supporting weightlifting goals. Here are some benefits of doing cardio alongside weightlifting:

Increased Endurance

Cardiovascular exercises like running, cycling, or swimming help to improve your breathing, lung capacity, and heart rate. As a result, your body becomes more efficient at transporting oxygen and nutrients to your muscles. This also means that you can push yourself harder and for longer periods during weightlifting sessions.

Burns Fat

Cardio exercises are an effective way to burn calories and shed fat. Studies have shown that combining weightlifting with cardio can increase fat loss while maintaining muscle mass. This is important for individuals who want to lose weight and build lean muscle mass simultaneously.

Reduces the Risk of Injury

Cardio exercises are an excellent way to improve your flexibility, mobility, and coordination. This helps to reduce the risk of injury during weightlifting sessions by improving your range of motion and reducing the stress on your joints.

Arnold’s Cardio Routine

Arnold Schwarzenegger was known for his exceptional cardio routine that helped to maintain his lean physique. He would typically do cardio for 30 minutes to an hour every day, primarily running and cycling.

Here is a breakdown of Arnold’s cardio routine:


Arnold was an avid runner and would run at least three miles (about five kilometres) daily. He would run outdoors or on a treadmill, depending on the weather. Running helped him to burn calories, increase his stamina, and build endurance.


Arnold was also a fan of cycling and would often incorporate it into his cardio routine. He would either cycle outdoors or use an exercise bike indoors. Cycling helped him to work out the lower body, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes, while improving his cardiovascular health.


In conclusion, cardio is a crucial aspect of weightlifting that should not be ignored. It helps to improve your overall fitness, burn fat, and reduce the risk of injury. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s dedication to cardio and weightlifting is a testament to the effectiveness of this combination in achieving a chiselled physique. So, if you’re looking to build a strong and healthy body, don’t forget to incorporate cardio into your weightlifting routine.