Cardio workouts, sometimes known as aerobic workouts or aerobic exercises, are one of the best ways to start improving your overall health and your fitness level. Cardio workouts (cardiovascular, in full) are those that raise your heart and breathing rate, getting the blood moving faster around your body.
This will help you to burn off more calories, since the more active you are, the more energy you will use. Aerobic exercise increases your metabolic rate on a long term basis, which means that even when you are sitting still, you will be burning more calories than before you started your exercise program.
If you have only just begun to think about exercise, then it is highly likely that your fitness level will be quite low. This is perfectly normal, but it does mean that you will need to start slowly. Bringing in any additional movement, within your daily routine, will be an excellent start. Think about simple changes that you can make, such as walking up the stairs instead of taking the elevator.
This may not sound like much, but if it is done on a regular basis, you will soon notice an improvement in your fitness. You will be able to climb the stairs faster, without being out of breath, and walking up stairs is actually a brilliant method of toning the muscles in your legs.
Other easy ways of getting more exercise into your daily routine include parking further away from your destination and walking the last part of the journey. This could be as simple as parking the car at the far end of the parking lot, instead of near to the doors. Do this both at work and when you go shopping, and the extra distance will soon start to add up.
When you go to the gym and you are pressed for time one of the best things you can do is plan to visit the gym during off-peak hours. These are typically between mid and late morning and then again from early afternoon until late afternoon. No matter what you are doing, if you work out during off-peak hours the gym will be much less crowded and as a result you will get the most out of your time there.
When you are working out remember that your goal is a fast and high intensity workout. This does not leave a lot of time for resting. If you reduce the amount of time that you rest while working out it helps you to keep a high metabolism which focuses the blood pumping to your target muscles. If you reduce your resting period to no more than 30 seconds you can replenish your muscle energy quickly.
When you are short on time at the gym you don’t want to give up cardio or abs. You want to ensure you build up your core strength. You can insert ab exercises in between weight lifting sets or you can try a short burst of cardio followed by yogic stretching. Try and stretch between short sets so as to reduce your muscle soreness.
A modern man might consider the following weekly routine:
Monday is Chest Day – On Monday you should conduct multiple sets for your chest exercises.
- Bench Presses – do one warm-up set and then get progressively heavier. Once this is reached revert to lighter weights. Do ten sets in total.
- Decline Barbell Presses – do one warm-up, then do heavier sets and close with one final set. You should do five total sets.
- Push–Ups – conduct three rep-out sets in total.
Tuesday – is core and cardio day – On Tuesday you should conduct multiple sets of exercises that strengthen your core. This might include twists as well as leg raises and crunches followed by running a track or doing a stair master.
Wednesday – is back and shoulders day – On Wednesday you should do multiple sets of exercises that target your back and shoulders.
- Pull-Ups – Conduct three sets of wide grip pull ups with body-weight. Then add a weight belt and additional weights to increase for heavy sets.
- Lat Machine Pull-Downs – Conduct five sets by pulling to the chest.
- Bent Over Rowing – Conduct five sets using either dumbbells or a barbell.
- Seated Rowing – Conduct five high reps by using weight sets and the cable-and-pulley machine.
- Military Press – Conduct one warm-up set and four heavy sets using a barbell.
- Alternate Dumbbell Press – Conduct alternate presses with moderate weights and then progress to heavy weights.
- Upright Rowing – Conduct five sets with moderate weights.
- Lateral Dumbbell Raises – Perform these raises to the front or to the side. Be sure to use light weights and progress to moderate weights.
Thursday – is core and cardio day – On Thursday you should repeat the set for Tuesday.
Friday – is arms day – On Friday you should focus on your biceps, triceps and forearms.
- Dumbbell Curls – Conduct these curls either sitting down or standing up. They should be done with alternate arm curls using heavy dumbbells.
- Reverse Grip Pull Downs – You should conduct these with the lat machine and perform five sets of these.
- Press Downs for Triceps– Conduct these with a lat machine and perform five sets.
- Supine French Presses – Conduct these with a barbell and do five sets.
- Dumbbell Press – Conduct this with a heavy dumbbell with five reps.
Try this weekly workout for a month on a consistent basis. You might just start noticing some visible results. If you are really vain enough, get a long mirror that you can stare at from head to toe.
Once you adapt yourself to this weekly routine, extend it for another month. Try taking pictures of yourself in front of the mirror at the end of every 2 weeks to see the visible comparisons. Trust us when we say that if you see the visible results it will give you a huge boost to move on your workout plans to another level!