Training

Spice Up Your Cardio!

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Are you bored with your cardio routine? If so, it may be time to spice things up. Doing the same thing day in and day out only leads to burnout and boredom, and makes it even more challenging to stay on track with your workout routine. Try changing things up with these three fun and challenging activities to freshen up your cardio routine.


Interval Training

Interval training has so many benefits. It really revs up calorie burn, shortens the length of your workout, and is a great way to challenge yourself in new ways. Interval training is simply alternating bursts of all-out effort followed by a recovery period. The best part is that you can perform interval training with any form or cardio! It works great with running, but it can also be done on a bike, elliptical, or any other type of fitness machine.

So you may be wondering how long you should be sprinting or recovering during an interval workout? According to recent research published in the April issue of Journal of Strength and Conditioning, the optimal work-to-rest ratio is 2:1, meaning that if you sprint for 2 minutes, you should allow a 1-minute rest in between rounds. But don’t forget to be creative and find what works best for you. If you’re just starting out with this type of training you may need a longer recovery interval, or you may wish to start with shorter sprint intervals.

One of my favourite interval workouts is a Pyramid Sprint Workout. Start by warming up for ten minutes at a moderate pace. You never want to start an interval workout without a proper warm up as this can lead to injury. Next follow this routine:

  • 30 seconds sprint – 30 seconds recovery
  • 1 minute sprint – 1 minute recovery
  • 2 minutes sprint – 2 minutes recovery
  • 3 minutes sprint – 3 minutes recovery
  • 2 minutes sprint – 2 minutes recovery
  • 1 minute sprint – 1 minute recovery
  • 30 seconds sprint – 30 seconds recovery

Be sure to finish up with a light cool down for 5-10 minutes afterwards.

Plyometrics Training

Similar to interval training, plyometrics are a great way to get more out of your workouts and can often be done without any equipment. Plyometrics training is also known as jump training. It’s a great way to increase muscular power and explosiveness, but it’s also effective in toning and strengthening your muscles while burning tons of calories.

So if you haven’t tried plyometric training, I encourage you to do so during an upcoming workout. You’ll be surprised at how challenging this type of training can be!

Some of my favourite plyometric exercises include

• Box Jumps
• Squat Jumps
• Lunge Hops
• Tuck Jumps
• Plyo Push-ups


Change Up Your Training With A Fun Activity

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut of heading to the gym and hopping on the treadmill. If that’s all you’re doing, you could be missing out on a lot of fun cardio opportunities to spice things up and prevent boredom. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to try new activities to give your body a chance to use your muscles in different ways. This can prevent injuries or muscle imbalances that could potentially keep you away from working out altogether.

While at the gym, it’s easy to head to the same machine every time, but there’s often a variety of equipment that you may be missing out on such as the elliptical machine or the stepmill. Additionally, many gyms also offer fun workout classes that can definitely be a change of pace and a lot of fun.

If you like the outdoors, there are so many different activities that can burn serious calories such as biking, paddle boarding, kayaking, or hiking. These activities are often fun and challenging, proving to be a great way to enjoy time with others. Taking your workouts outdoors can give you a change of scenery, some fresh air, and even a nice tan.

 

Certified personal trainer, nutrition coach, published model and actress, and the owner of Fox Fitness, Becky is a Fitfluential ambassador and a published fitness and nutrition writer. Becky graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and is passionate about helping women live a fit, energetic, and healthy lifestyle. Although she loves lifting weights in the gym, she also gets outdoors often for fun activities like running, biking, or yoga in the park to stay energized.

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