Cardio, is it all it's cracked up to be?
Updated: Jul 30, 2019
Cardio, who loves it as much as me?! Yeah, I thought so! Staring at the wall, listening to the humming of the machine and having the person next to you drip sweat on your machine...eww...not my favourite part of the gym at all!
I will always choose to do my cardio outdoors, something I enjoy doing, that is fun or invigorating, like a run or hike in the hills, or a bike ride, but when the weather doesn't co-operate, it's off to the gym I go!
I am often asked what is the best kind of cardio for weight loss? Back 'in the day' it was endless hours of stair-master, treadmill and biking, sticking your earphones in and committing to an hour or more of non-stop cardio...UGH! Thank goodness those days are long gone! Science has proven that the BEST way to achieve your weight loss goals is HIIT cardio: High Intensity Interval Training.
So, what exactly does HIIT look like? You can do HIIT on any machine, or even outside on a bike or simply running. The key component is to do bursts of full out intensity, as hard and as fast as you can for 15 seconds to 1 minute and then taking the time you need doing the same exercise at moderate exertion to bring your heart rate back to normal again. This can be done for as little as 15 minutes to achieve some pretty impressive results over the long term, in a short amount of time! When I was an active Personal Trainer, I always encouraged my clients to do 30 minutes of HIIT 3 x per week, say Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and a few days a week (Saturday/Sunday) of very moderate cardio activity such as a slow jog, fast walk, or casual bike ride to keep the body moving and stretched, if you are looking for fat loss. 3 days per week of HIIT will produce greater results in the fat loss department then an hour of cardio every day, and your metabolism will be ticking along at a faster rate for a longer period of time, so get doing your HIIT!
Also, incorporating HIIT into your weight lifting routine is an incredible way to burn fat, get faster results AND get in your cardio all at the same time! In between sets you don't take a rest, rather, you get doing pushups, burpees, TRX, or a minute on the spin bike at high intensity! Then you jump right back into your next weight set! Try it, you'll see the fat melt, and the muscles bulge! ~ Monika xx