Wondering just exactly how much cardio is enough? Well, when you begin working out, it is always a good idea to start slowly. But if you are someone who has been exercising for a while, how much cardio do you need? A good rule of thumb is 40 minutes, 3 to 5 times a week. If you are new to working out, start with 20 minutes and then work yourself up to 40 minutes.
I want to burn fat. What cardio should I do?
For fat loss, all you really need is 40 minutes of cardio, and this can be steady state, like a jog, an elliptical session or a bike ride. Or, you can turn it up a notch and do some high intensity interval training (also known as a HiiT workout) and really up the calorie burn.
Additionally, doing 40 minutes of cardio exercise 3 to 5 times a week benefits your heart, too. It helps to reduces your risk of heart disease, as well as reducing your risk of stroke and some types of cancer. When you do cardio, it works to increase the efficiency of blood circulation and this leads to more nutrients being delivered to the entire body. Cardio also helps reduce blood pressure.
What type of cardio should I try?
Cardio is actually a very personal choice, there is no one right activity for every single person. What do you enjoy doing? What will keep you coming back for more? If you hate to run, then trying to run for 40 minutes 3 to 5 times a week is never going to work. But if you love to dance, and can join a Zumba class, that will keep you motivated to keep working out.
Love to bike? Get outdoors and find a trail at Palo Duro Canyon. Or if it is too cold (or hot), tackle the stationary bike or a spin class. There is always something for everyone.
Do I need to combine cardio with strength training?
While cardio exercise will help you burn fat and lose weight, remember that cardio is not the only piece of the puzzle. You also need to weight train in order to build muscle, increase metabolism and burn more fat, while keeping the weight off.
The final piece of the puzzle is nutrition. You have to eat right to get the body you really want. In fact, nutritionists (and scientists) have proven that 70% of your body is built in the kitchen! So watch what you eat. Clean eating, no processed foods, cut back on sugar (or eliminate it completely) and simple carbs and you will see and feel a difference.
Ready to get with the program? Contact nationally certified personal trainer Ralph Roberts today and get started on your path to fitness. Ralph will monitor and guide your every step of the way in your journey to good health. If a personal trainer just isn't in the cards right now, consider getting a one-time, customized workout plan designed just for you.
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