What Is Cardio?
Cardio is any exercise that makes the heart and lungs work harder. It has many benefits such as increasing the metabolism, burning fat, and raising energy levels. Low impact activities such as walking are good for beginners or those with injuries. High impact activities that involve running or jumping are typically going to burn more calories. When you add cardio to your lifestyle you will be on your way to losing weight and feeling better.
What Types Of Cardio Can I Do?
If you want to use cardio for fat burning but don’t want to join a gym, you can still get in a great workout at home. There are so many options available. Investing in a piece of home gym equipment such as a treadmill or elliptical machine may be something to consider. It isn’t necessary though. There are many things you can do without equipment. Running, walking, dancing, kickboxing moves, and climbing stairs will all increase the heart rate. There are also activities that require minimal equipment, some which you may already have. Jumping rope, biking, and hula hooping are activities you can do with your kids and still get a cardio workout. Exercise videos are inexpensive and effective. You can try a variety of routines and exercise in the comfort of your own home.
If you find you are having trouble meeting your goals at home, you may want to think about joining a gym. There are many benefits to doing a cardio workout at the gym. There is a large variety of machines such as elliptical trainers, treadmills, and stationary bikes. Some gyms offer a pool.
There are personal trainers available to help point you in the right direction. There is usually a schedule of group fitness classes with instructors to push and motivate you. Classes such as spinning, step, kickboxing, zumba, and boot camp are popular options. Mixing it up with a variety of different classes can help avoid boredom and allow you to meet your goals.
Another way to incorporate a cardio workout into your routine is with sports. Communities often have programs where adults can join sport leagues. Softball, basketball, and tennis are popular choices. You can socialize with friends, get involved in competition, have fun, and do a cardio workout. If you find something you enjoy doing you’ll be much more likely to continue doing it.
How Much Cardio Do I Need?
Each person is a little bit different. The American College of Sports and Medicine recommends 60 minutes of moderate to high impact cardio on most days. Cardio for fat burning will depend on things such as your age, daily calorie intake, intensity, fitness level, amount of body fat, and weight. Beginners may look at the recommendation and be intimidated. There is no shame in starting slow. Pick a schedule that works for you. If you stick to it you can increase time and intensity as it gets easier.
Some Things To Remember
When starting a program of cardio for fat burning there are some helpful things to remember. Make sure you have appropriate clothing and shoes. It will keep you comfortable and help prevent injury. Stretch before and after exercise to warm up your muscles. Drink lots of water to help prevent dehydration. Some people find that tracking their progress is motivating. You can do this with a journal or a computerized monitor. Consider a workout buddy to help keep you on track. Have fun and you will meet your weight loss goals.