The benefits of cardio are numerous. Chief among them is burning calories. If you’re looking to lose weight, shedding those calories is the name of the game.
As you probably already know, weight loss is no joke. A well-rounded weight loss plan includes diet, exercise, and other lifestyle changes. But some regular cardio goes a long way.
Curious what cardio exercises work best to burn fat? Look no further. Here are 8 awesome cardio exercises for weight loss.
When it comes to cardio, there’s nothing more classic than running. The great thing about running is that it doesn’t require any special equipment beyond a pair of athletic shoes and some determination.
But keep in mind, if weight loss is your goal, a light jog isn’t going to cut it. To really burn those calories, brisk, uphill runs are the way to go. After all, spiking your heart rate is the name of the game here.
You can also opt for periodic moderate paced but lengthy runs. Running at a moderate pace for an hour can burn calories like crazy. Just keep in mind, this is tough on the muscles and joints, so only do this occasionally. Also, try to stick to softer services when going on long runs.
Cycling is an awesome alternative to running since it’s much easier on the knees and ankles. If you don’t want to get out on the street to bike, most gyms have stationary cycles available.
The thing to keep in mind here is that a leisurely pace won’t benefit you at all. With cycling, interval training is the thing to keep in mind. That means you’ll want to spike your heartbeat with high-intensity bursts broken up by short periods of rest.
A 180-lb. man can burn 1150 calories in an hour by cycling, but you’ll need to keep the intensity up. If you’re up for a high energy workout, cycling can be great.
Swimming is great for more than just fat burning. Far from just simple cardio, swimming is a full body workout that will benefit you in every conceivable way. With just one minute of fast swimming, you can burn 14 calories.
Keep in mind that your stroke of choice makes a difference. Butterflies are a great stroke to try if burning fat is your priority.
Like with cycling and running, intervals are your friend. You can swim as hard as possible in short bursts and tread water in between bursts to maximize calory burn. Even treading water burns calories, so if you want to start slow, you can do that between bursts as well.
4. Jumping Rope
There’s a reason jumping rope makes it into every boxing movie training montage, and it’s not just because it looks cool. Jumping rope is a great tool for burning calories, and real-life boxers, fighters, and other athletes all do it.
In just 30 minutes of fast jumping rope, you can burn up to 500 calories. Realistically, you won’t be able to start at that level, but that’s ok. Doing minute long bursts with lower intensity breaks in between can still burn lots of calories.
Jumping rope is also great because it’s portable and easy. Keep a jump rope in your bag if you travel a lot and you’ll never even have to leave your room to get a great workout.
Ellipticals are great because they’re low-impact. While this does make them a little less effective than some other cardio machines, they can still get the job done.
For the best results, work with a high incline setting. This simulates steps without being tough on your joints. Also, try high-intensity intervals.
If you’re going at an above moderate pace, you can burn 500-600 calories an hour on an elliptical. While that might not seem amazing, anyone worried about the impact on their body will be thankful for the elliptical’s low-impact design.
Rowing is a great way to combine upper and lower body workouts. It can also really burn through the calories if done right.
An hour of rowing at a moderate pace will burn around 800 calories. That said, if you opt for high-intensity intervals instead, you can bump that number up over 1000 pretty easily.
With rowing, you want to use your entire body. Don’t let your arms do all the work. By engaging all your muscle groups, you’ll be getting a full-body workout and burning calories at the same time.
Boxing is so much more than just a combat sport. At its core, boxing replicates the interval training that’s been mentioned so often throughout this list.
Many of the training exercises you’ll do in a boxing class are already on this list. Apart from that, the act of boxing itself engages way more than just your arm muscles. In fact, your core plays a huge part in it.
Overall, boxing is a fun and exciting way to burn calories.
This last one takes the cake when it comes to burning calories. If you want to burn a lot of calories in a little time, sprinting is the way to go.
The best way to maximize your sprints is by sprinting for 20-30 seconds and then jogging for a minute. Again, interval training maximizes calory burn.
The great thing about sprinting is that you can do it almost anywhere and it engages tons of muscle groups. If you want a lower impact workout, try using a treadmill for less wear and tear on your joints.
Cardio Exercises Anyone Can Do
The best part about these calory killing cardio exercises is that everybody can do them. Even if you don’t have a gym membership, a few laps around the block will do the job.
That said, if you still feel like you don’t have the time to fit in an exercise regimen, there are other options. Keep reading to find out how you can lose weight even without cardio.