Why should I do cardio exercises?
The heart is a large muscle and needs to be exercised like every other muscle. Cardiovascular exercises help the heart by strengthening it over time. There are lots of different methods of cardiovascular exercises. There are several different types of cardio exercises that you can perform during exercise.
- Before any cardio exercise dynamic stretching should be completed to prevent injury
- Carbo-loading can increase your performance any type of LSD running
- Lengthening your muscles through stretching can help increase your speed
- Learning about different types of cardio training can prevent injuries and plateaus
- Performing a periodization strategy with cardio exercises will help keep it interesting
- Tracking your exercises in a log or app will allow you to chart your progress
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Long slow distance training refers to cardio exercises that are very slow for a long period of time. Usually this refers to running a marathon or even a ten kilometer run. After around 15 minutes your body starts to use fats as a fuel source (source 2). It is about this time that you might find you are hitting the wall. If you work through this time period you might have much more energy and find you could run forever.
High intensity interval training refers to short bursts of almost maximum intensity followed by a relatively longer rest interval. One example is thirty seconds of intense exercise (90-100% of your maximum heart rate) followed by ninety seconds of rest or very light exercise. This type of cardio training is the most effective for increasing VO2 Max and also losing body fat.
Hill training like the type you see on your treadmill is very effective for again increasing VO2 Max and fighting through a plateau. If you have trained a long time in the above cardio modes, it is time to try this method.
You should be holding your stretches for 20-30 seconds and if you want to increase your range of motion you can do two or three sets.
- Treadmill for 5-10 minutes
- Cross-Trainer for 10 minutes
- Rowing for 5 minutes