It is impossible to separate the influences of training vs nutrition on fitness. When considering overall fitness it is important to separate fitness into cardio and weight or resistance training. These three operate with each other and influence each other. You will have to consider all of diet and caridio and weight training if you want to lose weight or gain muscle.
It is a three point solution:
I would say that it is impossible to say which one is more important, but one or more may be more important depending on your fitness experience.
Training vs Nutrition for the Beginner
When you start out, you should take it easy on the training to avoid injuries and focus your efforts on diet and nutrition. If you focus at the beginning on diet and nutrition, then you can make substantial gains in muscle and losses in weight. That is what really counts at this stage. These are the reasons why:
- if you eat 5 to 6 small meals a day rather than 2 to 3 large ones, it can make very fast changes in the way that your body looks;
- if you replace processed fats with omega three fats found in fish, this can reduce your weight very quickly;
- if you replace the refined sugars with unrefined sugars found in fruit and vegetables, and whole grains, it can create weight loss;
- if you increase your low protein diet with a portion of protein such as chicken breast or egg whiles, it will help you can muscle and keep you from getting hungry.
For example, if you’ve been skipping meals and only eating 2 times per day, jumping your meal frequency up to 5 or 6 smaller meals a day will transform your physique very rapidly.
So for the beginner, the training vs nutrition dilemma is solved in favour of nutrition. If you have the right diet, you will have the right nutrition and you will see very quick improvements to you physique, energy and even blood sugar if you are diabetic.
Focusing on diet will also allow you to reduce the possibility of injury. You can start easy and build up your workout over time. When you have mastered your nutrition, you can then focus on training, since you will not get any further gains from diet.
Training vs Nutrition for Intermediate or Advanced
Once you have mastered your diet, the training vs nutrition dilemma is resolved in favour of training. At this point, your diet will not matter much, so long as you stick to it. However, you can increase your training intensity and efficiency as much as you like. Your focus should be on combining a cardio and weight or resistance training program. The workouts do not have to be excessively long, but they should be consistent. You can use a trainer to help you to develop a routine that works with your schedule and what is available for you to use.
So, to answer the training vs nutrition dilemma, question, nutrition is always important, and has to be peaked. However, once you have this in place and have managed to build in some discipline, then your focus should be on training.