Cardio for Beginners


Now that we’ve cleared out some of the basic, fundamental beginners’ principles, let’s get to the aerobic part. (Oh no, did we hear ‘cardio’?)

Bodybuilding is a discipline that is mainly pointed at weight training, in other words, it mostly uses short lasting, intense workloads.

The oxygen debt of 5-9 liters per set cannot efficiently activate the cardio vascular and mostly the respiratory system, therefore the effectiveness upon them is minor.

The typical bodybuilding workout, that is pointed at developing more muscle mass, helps the development of the Alactate-anaerobic qualities of the organism, which from it’s side determines the local muscle endurance. That means that the heavy workload doesn’t directly depend on the oxygen, while the aerobics are in functional relation with it.

Benefits that cardio gives you:

  1. Improved cardio-respiratory functions
  2. Better capillarization of the muscle
  3. Increased metabolism
  4. Improved recovery
  5. Improved aerobic endurance (Obviously)

Aerobics For Beginners

It is recommended to do your cardio outside, rather than using a treadmill, preferably on a running track (400m) or some other place, where you have information of the distance you ran.

For men and women, you start with 6 laps (2400m) and 4 laps (1600m) respectively. You keep moderate speed, without measuring your time.

If it’s impossible for you to run the whole distance at once, switch between walking and running, but – DO NOT STOP!!!

The goal for the next workouts is increasing the distances endured while running, until you are able to run the whole distance of 2400 or 1600 meters respectively.

From then on, you gradually increase the whole distance, up until 10 laps (4000m) for men, and 7 laps (2800m) for women.

After completing this stage, you will need to measure the time needed for the completion of the whole distance.

Up until this moment, the increase in tension was done by increasing the distance, from now on the main goal is to focus on the running speed- completing the distance faster, in other words you INTENSIFY the workout.

This can be done in the following way: If you ran 10 laps in 24 minutes, that means the average time per lap is 2 minutes and 24 seconds. On the next workout, you start with a speed granting the completion of a lap for 2 mins and 24 seconds, but not faster.You maintain this speed for the first 8-9 laps, and if you feel like you have what it takes, you increase the speed in the last 1-2 laps.

This method of training is maintained during the first couple of months, also known as the beginner’s phase.

With the increased aerobic endurance, the distances ran can be increased up to 5000 meters for men and 3200 meters for women, but that should be considered the upper limit, and the increase in tension from here on should only be looked at by intensifying the process – in this case, that means increasing the speed, as we said above.

That is due to the fact, that the extensive aerobic workouts get into a ‘competitive fight’ for energy with the weight training workouts, therefore, as a response you have a weakly pronounced adaptive reaction from the organism, impeding the so-desired muscle hypertrophy (growth).

This method of aerobic training doesn’t point directly at the bodybuilding goals and requirements, but rather focuses on the benefits of this type of training, by increasing the functionality of the cardio-respiratory system, economization of the oxygen and transport in the body, increasing the metabolism and last but not least, bettering your immune system.


You just finished the Training Principles for Beginners! Now you are ready to move on to the advanced section.

Training Principles for Advanced Athletes >>

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