Episode 42 – The quick cardio cheat sheet

 

Cardio training is a must for everyone in health & fitness.

 

While cardio usually connotes images of 2-3 hour long runs, biking up mountains, or even swimming dozens of laps early in the morning, it doesn’t have to be that strenuous. Let’s explore five different cardio exercise methods to help you find the right cardio for you.

 

A quick refresher on cardio though

Cardio, or cardiovascular training is basically physical movement that stimulates the heart and circulatory system to work more effectively. When undergoing cardio training your heart rate will rise, the body temperature will increase and blood will start to move around the body to supply oxygen and other key nutrients for metabolism.

At the same time, the cardiovascular system will remove toxins from the cells and organs such as, carbon dioxide and other waste products created in metabolism. The more you train this system, the more efficient it becomes.

 

Now you know why it’s important to train this system, how do you train it?

 

5 cardio exercise methods

 

H.I.I.T

High intensity interval training is a type of training that is quite popular now. It balances periods of highly strenuous work with periods of fixed rest. A usual ratio of work to rest may be 1:3 or 1:2.

 

An example of H.I.I.T may be this sequence of cardio:

  1. 45 seconds of running followed by
  2. 90 seconds of rest
  3. Repeated for 10 reps

 

Fartlek

Fartlek training is a type of training that is based on the principle of working when you feel good, then resting or stopping when you need to. It is totally feeling based and can be quite random. This is a great way for beginners to get into fitness without the pressure of doing a fixed distance, speed or time. It also allows you become more aware of your own capacity.

 

An example of Fartlek training may go like this:

  • I start running for 1 minutes 37seconds and realise my breath is getting out of control so I stop and walk.
  • I noticed I walked for 28 seconds before I started to jog again.
  • 5 minutes 12 seconds later I feel great so I run for another 12 minutes 59 seconds before deciding to finish the session.

 

Wanna know the other cardio methods? Continue reading below…

 

 

Tabata

The Tabata protocol was designed by a scientist in Japan. He that found that if an individual trained intensely for short periods of time, followed by short rest, they could achieve better cardiovascular fitness when compared to normal steady state training. He also found that this style of training is great for those who are quite busy and only had short amounts of time to exercise.

 

A very specific style of H.I.I.T, Tabata training follows this method:

  1. 20 seconds of intense exercise (eg. rowing or cycling machine)
  2. 10 seconds of rest
  3. Repeat for 8 rounds over a total of 4 minutes

 

Ramping

Ramping is a simple way to organise your cardio training. Ramping refers to the way you can systematically increase your intervals so that you can continuously challenge yourself. This is also a good way to “trick” your body into working at high intensities for longer.

 

An example of ramping your cardio may be:

  1. 10m sprint, jog back
  2. 20m sprint, jog back
  3. 40m sprint, jog back
  4. 80m sprint, jog back
  5. 120m sprint, jog back
  6. 200m sprint, jog back
  7. [Ramp to as high as needed].

 

Pyramids

Pyramids is another great way to organise your cardio training. In this style of cardio you will start off with small distances, times and/or intensities and then build up to a maximum. Once at the session maximum, return back to the beginning.

 

A good example of pyramid training may go something like this:

  1. 100m on the rower
  2. 200m on the rower
  3. 400m on the rower (peak of pyramid)
  4. 200m on the rower
  5. 100m on the rower
  6. Repeat as many as possible

 

Carve up your cardio!

It’s time to carve up your cardio. Cardio training doesn’t get any easier than these five cardio exercise methods. Give one or more of these a try today and you’ll be on your way to being fitter & healthier!

 

-Martins Zemlickis thank you for the photo

Bibliography

  • Chek, P. (2009) How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy!
  • Cooley, B. (2005) The Genius of Flexibility: The smart way to stretch and strengthen your body. Fireside
  • Erhman, J. Gordon, P. Visich, P. Keteyian, S. (2003) Clinical Exercise Physiology. Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc.
  • Porth, C. (2002) Pathophysiology: Concepts of Altered Health States (6th Ed.) Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
  • Scientific Publishing, Ltd. (no author) (2006) Scientific Publishing’s Anatomy Chart Book. Scientific Publishing Limited
  • Sherwood, L.(2004) Human Physiology: From Cells to Systems (5th Ed.) Thomson, Brooks/Cole

Chris Everingham lives and breathes health & fitness.

Chris Everingham lives and breathes health & fitness. International Athlete, Elite Performance Manager for the Philippine Volcanoes rugby teams, qualified Dietitian / Nutritionist and qualified educator. Chris Everingham combines more than 10 years of experience and education together to deliver the best strategies to grow your mindset, rewire your habits and transform your life.

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