How You Should Be Using Cardio For Your Goals

cardio woman running for goals

 

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So many people get confused about how to use cardio to reach their fitness goals. Some people refer to themselves as ‘cardio bunnies’, while other people actually hate it with a passion. If you’re unsure of how to use cardio for your own goals, this post will help you!

Using Cardio For Cutting

When you want to use cardio for cutting, AKA getting rid of that excess fat, you tend to need to do it the most. However, it is still not the be all and end all. You should always prioritize resistance training and weights over cardio in order to get the best results. You can try a few different approaches here depending on how your body responds. The key is to figure out what works best for you and stick with it.

Some people like to tack on 10-20 minutes of steady cardio to the end of their resistance workouts, around 4-5 times per week. Some prefer to do 3-4 sessions of steady cardio at 30-45 minutes. Some prefer to do 2-3 10-15 minute sessions of HIIT per week, which is amazing for getting rid of excess fat, but tends to put a little more stress on your body. You can experiment with what works for you, but remember, it’s about working smarter and not harder. You shouldn’t focus too much on the amount of calories burned, as this can be distracting!

Using Cardio When Bulking

If you’re attempting to pack on lots of muscle, then you don’t need to do cardio so much. Doing too much cardio can stop us from gaining the muscle we want. However, it’s still recommended you do it for general fitness reasons. You could do one 10-20 minute session per week if you want to make sure you’re keeping up your cardiovascular fitness while adding an optimal amount of muscle. However, you could also do a handful of shorter, steady sessions per week. HIIT is good for keeping muscle mass and burning fat, but you don’t want it to interfere with those heavy lifts. Be smart about what you choose to do!

Using Cardio For General Fitness

Using cardio for general fitness is a good idea too! Reading this elliptical article will help you to get a good idea of one of the best machines for cardio. If you want to keep your general fitness with cardio, you shouldn’t do more than 45 minutes. You might think that doing more is better, but again, you must be smart. Try challenging yourself with hill sprints and a mix of different cardio types for the best results.

Cardio Tips

Here are some cardio tips that can help you to mix things up and keep them interesting if you’re not that keen on it!

  • Try doing ‘deadmill sprints’ for 10 minutes. You keep the treadmill off and use your feet to move the treadmill. It’s much harder, and will get your heart pumping fast. The time goes super quick though!
  • Do the cardio you feel like doing. Never force yourself to do something you don’t want to do. This isn’t good for your mindset and you likely won’t get results as you won’t want to stick to it.
  • Use BCAAs to rehydrate and stay energized during cardio.
  • Create an awesome playlist!
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