Say goodbye to the long hours on the treadmill or stairmaster. It’s hard to get people to wrap their mind around a different way of cardio especially if they’ve been doing it for so long. For me personally, the last place you’ll see me is on the treadmill running. Running long distances or just stepping my life away on a stairmaster for an hour just isn’t my jam. I feel like it’s just sooo boring. After 5 minutes it’s time for me to move on already!
I know a lot of you out there are thinking the same thing about how much you don’t like jogging, cycling or stair stepping. (we all don’t like something) There’s been countless amounts of times where I’ve heard women say that they want to get in shape and then say “okay, I better go for a run to start getting in shape.” The truth is, you have to actually train before you start running. There’s a big risk when you jump into running or doing some sort of high impact cardio if you’re muscles and joints aren’t prepared for it.
Here are different types of cardio that will yield better results and won’t have you stuck to a machine for longer than an hour.
Talk about a serious calorie burner, just skip some rope! You can jump rope for 10 minutes and still burn the same amount of calories you would if you ran for an hour. My favorite thing to do is to set up my phone timer in front of me, skip rope for 30-60 seconds than take a break for 30-60 seconds. If you’ve never skipped rope before, start with 30 seconds! As you progress try to make it for a whole minute long.
So many people don’t realize how important and beneficial walking really is. Many think that you have to run to burn calories and lose weight but walking will do just about the same. Getting in extra steps every day will help you reach your goals faster and won’t ruin your muscle gains by doing too much cardio. So instead of taking the elevated, take the stairs. Leave an extra 10 minutes at the end of your lunch break to go for a brisk walk or instead of watching tv after dinner, go for a walk first.
If you don’t have much time to get in a workout HIIT is great to burn calories and get your heart rate up. A 14 minute circuit will easily get your heart rate up and you out of breathe. I love high intensity interval training if I’m short on time or travelling. You can easily do a HIIT workout without any equipment, just your body weight. So being able to workout anywhere is super easy and effective!
Cardio is not a bad thing. It’s great for your heart and overall well being but going overboard with it won’t give you the results you want. My best advice is to pick up some weights and start progressing to lift heavier overtime. That will allow you to build lean muscle and burn more calories even when you aren’t working out. Having overall more muscle mass will give you that ‘fit’ look you want. It’s all about doing what you love so it lasts a lifetime. So if you love to run, incorporate it in your routine but also focus on lifting weights. If you still want to get your cardio session in, check out THIS article I wrote about if you should be doing cardio or lifting weights first.