Cardio can feel like a swear word to some people. Sometimes it’s enjoyable, but most of the time it’s a living hell. In fact, excuse me while I say a prayer for people who are slogging away on treadmills right now. OK I’m back. In all seriousness, cardio is an important part of any workout routine. Some people need it more than others, but it’s good for your cardiovascular health too. This comprehensive guide to cardio should give you a good idea of how much cardio you should be doing, and how to go about it. Enjoy!
HIIT for Fat Loss
If your goal is to lose weight/fat, then the best way to go about it is with HIIT. There’s no point slogging away on the treadmill or another piece of equipment for hours on end if your only goal is to lose fat. In fact, doing too much cardio will hinder your fat loss results. More on that later! To get a good session of HIIT in, sprinting is fantastic. However, you can also switch it up by using the stepper, bike, or another piece of cardio equipment. Simply go as hard as you can for around 20-30 seconds, then have 30-60 seconds as a cooling down period. Do this anywhere from 10-20 times. Build yourself up slowly but always aim to work your hardest. The great thing about HIIT is that you get a brilliant workout in in a matter of 15-20 minutes, rather than hours like some people think it needs to take! Do this 3-4 times a week and however much you have to lose, you’ll start seeing amazing results.
Staying Healthy With Cardio
Cardio is a good way to stay healthy, so everybody should include a little in their routine, even if it’s just a walk. You can try different forms of cardio to make it as engaging and fun as possible. A Zumba class can be lots of fun, but you also have pole lessons, swimming, spin, and more. Have fun with it and do it a couple of times a week if you’re aiming for cardio fitness.
Avoiding Muscle Loss
If you want to get a fit look, then the key to doing so is avoiding muscle loss. Muscle in both men and women is what gives them that ‘toned’, fit appearance. A quick way to lose all of your muscle is with too much cardio. If you’re slogging away on treadmills, you’re burning calories, but you’re also encouraging your body to eat your muscle for fuel. This leaves you with a ‘skinny fat’ look rather than a fit look. HIIT is great for keeping your muscle and burning fat. Steady state cardio does have it’s place, but you shouldn’t be doing it for more than 45 minutes at a time, and definitely not too often.
Hopefully this post has told you all you need to know about cardio. Remember to have fun with it for the best results. See you soon!