Get Your Heart Racing! All You Need to Know About Cardio
Published on: 05-Aug-2022
10 min read
Updated on : 02-Nov-2023
Get Your Heart Racing! All You Need to Know About Cardio
Fitness experts suggest that getting our heart rate up before a workout is essential. Why is that? Read on to know everything about cardio and its importance.
Cardio training is an exercise performed to advance aerobic or cardiovascular fitness. Cardiovascular fitness is an excellent measure of the heart’s ability to pump oxygenated blood to the muscles.
When the cardiorespiratory systems are appropriately addressed with the correct training principles and norms, it helps enhance the body's ability to deliver and utilise more oxygen to the metabolically active tissues. Good cardiorespiratory endurance increases the body’s capacity to work for longer durations without fatigue.
Cardio training has numerous benefits, including higher bone density, better heart and lung functioning, lower stress levels and lower risk of illnesses like hypertension, high cholesterol, type-2 diabetes and various cancers.
Table of Contents
1 Why is Cardio Training So Important?
2. Home Vs Gym Cardio Exercises
3. Key Points
4. The Expert’s Advice
5. The Final Say
Why is Cardio Training So Important?
Cardio training is vital for the body’s overall health and performance. Regular cardio training can bring about numerous beneficial metabolic changes.
Better Cardiovascular Health
People that have or are at risk for heart diseases are suggested to engage in aerobic exercises. This is because exercising strengthens the heart and helps it pump blood throughout the body more efficiently.
It helps patients manage their blood pressure levels and clears up arteries by lowering “bad” cholesterol and raising “good” cholesterol levels. Precisely, aim for 40 minutes of moderate to high-intensity aerobic exercise 3-4 times a week.
Managing Blood Pressure
You can even manage your hypertension or high blood pressure symptoms with cardiovascular activity. This is because exercise can lower blood pressure.
Controls Asthma Symptoms
People with asthma who exercise regularly can reduce the frequency of attacks and intensity. Even if you have asthma, you should still consult your doctor before starting a new fitness programme. They could suggest a particular course of action or safety measures to keep you safe while exercising.
Try doing some aerobics throughout the day if you have difficulties falling asleep at night. According to a study on those with persistent sleep problems, a regular exercise regimen combined with instruction on good sleep hygiene can effectively relieve insomnia. However, exercising too close to bedtime could make it harder to fall asleep.
The foundations of weight loss are food and exercise. However, doing only aerobic activity might be enough to help you lose weight.
To burn 400–500 calories, you could need to jog or walk up to 4 miles, depending on your weight and pace. Along with aerobic activity, calorie cutting can lower the quantity of exercise required to lose the same amount of weight.
Strengthening the Immune System
The research on the effects of exercise on the immune systems of sedentary and active women demonstrated that frequent, mild aerobic exercise raises levels of certain antibodies known as immunoglobulins in the blood. This ultimately strengthens the immune system. The function of the immune system of the group of sedentary women did not improve, and their cortisol levels were higher than those in the active groups.
Your mood may also be enhanced by physical activity. Participants in a study on people with depression spent 30 minutes per session walking on a treadmill. They were asked to observe and report any changes in mood after ten days.
All individuals claimed that their depressive symptoms had significantly decreased. These findings imply that exercising may substantially affect mood, even if practised for short periods regularly.
You do not have to wait up to two weeks to notice progress. The study showed that you could benefit from just one workout session.
Safe to Perform
Everyone should engage in cardiovascular activity, even the elderly and those with long-term medical issues. Finding what is safe for you in your specific scenario and works best for you requires collaboration with your doctor. Even kids should regularly engage in aerobic activity.
Home Vs Gym Cardio Exercises
At Home Cardio Exercises
- Running or jogging
- Spot running
- Jumping jacks
- High knees jump
Gym Cardio Exercises
- Treadmill walking/jogging
- Stationary cycling
Cardio training, like strength training, needs the right kinds of variation, progression and overload for advantageous adaptations to occur. The following variables must be kept in mind:
You can change the exercise style to suit your preferences and skills. Cardio exercises include swimming, rope skipping, jogging, cycling, cross-country skiing, stair climbing, using an elliptical machine, dancing, and rowing. When deciding what to do, consider your preferences, level of expertise, joint health, and local weather.
The number of aerobic workouts performed each day or week depends on the state and level of training. 2-5 sessions a week are sufficient. This depends on concurrent training.
Duration refers to the period of the session of cardio training. This is connected to exercise intensity. Strive for 15-60 minutes of continuous cardio training.
By measuring the heart rate output or oxygen uptake, you can track how intense your cardio workout is. The most practical technique is to count your pulse or use a heart rate monitor to measure your heart rate. Exercise 60-90% of your maximal heart rate to achieve the best cardiovascular fitness (50-85% of your heart rate reserve). This level is influenced by fitness level, age, climate, gender, medications, etc.
The Expert’s Advice
When gaining muscle mass and reducing body fat is your objective:
- After weight training sessions, engage in 10-15 minutes of low to moderate-intensity cardio exercise.
- Days off from strength training should be spent recovering, engaging in high-intensity interval training, dynamic flexibility/yoga, or engaging in another session of 20 to 30 minutes of low to moderate cardio exercise.
When maintaining muscle mass while reducing body fat is your objective:
- After strength training sessions, engage in 15 to 30 minutes of low to moderate intensity cardio exercise.
- Days off from strength training could be spent recovering, engaging in high-intensity interval training, dynamic flexibility/yoga, or engaging in another session of 20–30 minutes of low to moderate cardio exercise.
The Final Say
Cardio provides flexibility to choose your workout mode while improving cardiovascular health and strengthening your immunity. Cardio provides flexibility to choose your workout mode while improving cardiovascular health and boosting immunity. Get out, get moving and get your heart racing!
1. Is cardio on its own enough for weight loss?
No. Regarding weight loss, cardio, strength workout and staying in a calorie deficit is essential.
2. Should cardio be treated just as a warm-up?
Yes, it depends on the duration of the cardio. You can do 5-10 minutes of cardio before your workout as a warm-up.
3. How many minutes of cardio a day should you do as a beginner?
As a beginner, doing 15-20 minutes of cardio 4-5 times a week to improve your heart rate is recommended.
4. Should I perform cardio before or after a meal?
Both. You can do it on an empty stomach in the morning with little to no calories as well as after a meal but make sure there is a gap of 1-1.5 hours between your meal and workout.
5. Can cardio exercises induce injuries?
Cardio exercises help in warming up the muscles. Warming up allows the body to distribute oxygen to the trained muscle groups. Warming up raises the body temperature, reducing the risk of muscle and tendon injuries.
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