Natural Bodybuilder Jenna Bidoglio’s Hack to Preserve Muscle: Fasted LISS Cardio

Jenna Bidoglio explains the benefits of fasted LISS cardio
Image via Instagram @jennabiz19

INBA PNBA Figure competitor Jenna Bidoglio shares the benefits of adding fasted LISS cardio to your training regimen. 

Fasting and cardio can have ample benefits for you. When many people think of fasted cardio, they instantly think of fat loss. However, the right kind of fasted cardio can have uses other than fat loss, such as helping you preserve muscle. International Natural Bodybuilding Association (INBA)/Professional Natural Bodybuilding Association (PNBA) athlete Jenna Bidoglio says fasted, low-intensity steady-state (LISS) cardio will give you many health benefits. Including reducing your recovery time. 

Jenna Bidoglio competed in the Figure Open and Classic Figure divisions at INBA PNBA Mr. America 2021. She placed first place in the Classic Figure category and received third place in the Figure Open. She’s also an athletic trainer. In an Instagram post uploaded on February 20, 2022, Bioglio stated the benefits of fasted LISS cardio below. 

“One reason is to elicit hunger. Fasted LISS(< 60% max hr) is helpful in instances where I need to push food and there is little or no hunger and especially no AM hunger. 

Get into a parasympathetic state. Fasted LISS can help start the day in a rest and digest state instead of all stressed and rushing out. This can be beneficial for anyone who needs to lower stress mentally and systemically. 

Fasted LISS has the added benefit of cardiovascular health while requiring little to no recovery so it shouldn’t have an effect on pushing strength gains. Some people benefit from keeping cardio separate from lifts and this can be a great option.”

Bidoglio also noted saving high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts for after eating. 

Below is Jenna Bidoglio’s full post on the benefits of fasted LISS cardio.

Fasted LISS Preserves Muscle 

If you’re trying to build strength and muscle and find it hard to eat in the morning due to not being hungry, fasted LISS cardio can help ramp up your appetite

It’s also beneficial for helping you gain strength. That’s because too much cardio can hinder your gains in the gym, but LISS cardio is at a low intensity. Therefore, it won’t impact your strength gains. Instead, it will help you burn additional calories and improve your cardiovascular health without impacting your recovery. Of course, this will help you preserve muscle because you’ll be able to add cardio to your plan without it affecting your lifts. 

Conversely, too much intense cardio, such as HIIT, can take longer to recover from and make it hard to push weight in the gym. Also, it can raise your cortisol levels, which will also make it harder to recover from workouts. 

INBA PNBA Mr. America 

In 2021, Bodoglio placed well at Mr. America 2021, a competition that takes place a little before the Super Bowl of natural bodybuilding – Natural Olympia. The INBA PNBA has the 2022 Pro/Am Mr & Ms USA set for July 2 in Dallas, TX. 

Click here to view the INBA PNBA’s initial 2022 schedule.  


Fasted LISS cardio will help you reduce stress and require little to no recovery compared to other forms of cardio. In return, you’ll build strength and preserve muscle. 

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Terry Ramos
As a personal trainer and writer, Terry loves changing lives through coaching and the written word. Terry has a B.S. in Kinesiology and is an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer and ISSA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. He enjoys playing music, reading, and watching films when he's not writing or training.