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Total Body Wellness: Problems with Traditional Cardio

Total Body Wellness: Problems with Traditional Cardio 
Caution:  The popular cardio workout you’re currently practicing could be the culprit behind those extra, unwanted pounds your body is hanging onto.


Believe it or not, there is a wrong way to use a treadmill. And an elliptical and stair stepper for that matter. Jumping on and going at one monotonous pace for 40 minutes or an hour is working against you. Stop doing it! Back away from the machine. 061410VALLEYVIEW.GIF

 

For starters, you have to burn fat and the best way of doing this is by building muscle. That should sound familiar; we talked about it a few weeks ago here.

 

You might be thinking that I hate cardio, but I don’t. I just like the proper kind of cardio, the kind that won’t have you pulling your hair out because you’ve been spinning your wheels not dropping the weight that you could be. When you stress your body in one way for an extended period of time, it doesn't know when you are going to stop so it begins to conserve fat for future energy needs.

 

Start focusing on your heart rate. You might be tempted here to think in terms of heart rate “zones”, like the cardio zone, fat burning zone and so on. Delete those thoughts. Instead think of really speeding up that heart rate and then letting it slow back down.

 

Get your heart rate to go crazy! Up, down, up, down, again and back again. Your body responds to this favorably, this is the type of stress it was created to endure.

 

Let’s go back to our Paleolithic (B.C.) ancestors.

 

When did they ever just run for an hour? Just running around in their cavemen outfits past the neighbors cave on a jog for some exercise. They didn't, the neighbors would have talked. 0110Fence_INSTORY.gif

 

In fact they didn't run unless they were chasing food or running in an attempt to not become food. Yet, research has showed they were lean and had very little incidence of obesity. So take a lesson and start training like a cave man (or woman if you will) and use that tread mill more like this:

 

 

  • Start off walking for 5 minutes
  • 1-minute jog/sprint
  • 30-second rest (slow walk or nothing at all)
  • 1:30-minute jog/sprint
  • 30-second rest
  • 2-minute jog/sprint
  • 30-second rest
  • 1:30-minute jog/sprint
  • 30-second rest
  • 1-minute jog/sprint

Then the next time you do "cardio" try this one:

  • 5-minute walk
  • 1 minute at a 4-mile-per-hour pace, flat
  • 2 minutes at a 5 mph pace, five-degree incline
  • 1 minute at 6 or 7 mph pace, flat
  • 2 minutes at 3 mph pace, 10-degree incline
  • 1 minute at 5 mph pace, five-degree incline
  • 1 minute at 4 mph, 15-degree incline
  • 2 minutes at 6 or 7 mph, flat
  • 2 minutes at 3 mph, 15-degree incline
  • 1 minute at 7 mph, flat and final sprint!

 

If you are a newbie, just work at getting your heart rate up during those faster phases. If you are the “Cardio Queen,” sprint as fast as you can during those faster intervals.

 

That’s 13 minutes that will kick your booty and burn fat for the next three days straight. And now you have 30 minutes of free time to get the rest of your to-do list done. You just burned more fat than you were going to in a month otherwise and you created more time in your day.

Ashley Berlin -

Ashley Berlin is the health and fitness columnist for Cincy Chic and the owner of BEAT Personal Training in West Chester. Want more information about something you read here? Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>


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