18 June 2007

Get up for some Cardios

Cardiovascular training is good for you in more than one ways. As you all must be knowing it also helps in weight loss and getting into shape. All those diet pills and a million other products won’t help if you don’t keep up with your exercise routine. Good comfortable equipment like elliptical trainers will help you stick to a routine.

Most of us have a common thinking that you have to really sweat it out for a good cardio session but that’s not exactly true. Cardios can be divided into 2 broad categories.

High and Low intensity cardios

High intensity cardio can maintain lean muscle, burn more fat then low intensity cardio, builds your endurance, and boosts your metabolism during and after exercise. The types of high intensity exercises you can perform can be any type in which the intensity level can be easily adjusted such as running, walking, and most cardio machines (treadmills, ellipticals, etc.) Basically, it involves interval training which means repetitions of high-speed/intensity work followed by periods of rest or low activity [Source: Wikipedia].

Low intensity cardio has little effect on your cardiovascular system but is good at burning fat. In fact, that is its main job and works well for people who are really out of shape. Low intensity exercises involve any cardio exercise in which you maintain a comfortable pace for the duration of the workout. So this is the one for starters and everyone who is looking for getting into shape first and ellipticals do a great job in doing this.

When to Use Each Type

Knowing the difference means you can decide when you should incorporate each into your workouts. High intensity cardio can be quite intense since it involves interval training. You’ll also want to eat a sufficient amount of carbs (at least 2 - 3 hours) before a high intensity workout for energy. Many athletes and bodybuilders use high intensity cardio to improve their endurance. I think a couple of times a week of high intensity would work on average but you should seek the advice of a professional fitness trainer to see what works for you.

Low intensity cardio is great for keeping your weight down or initially dropping weight when you are very out of shape. A 30 minutes or so on your elliptical trainer would probably be sufficient. You just have to get into a routine and stick to it.