What is the best cardio workout for weight loss? What is the best cardio workout for fat loss? What is the best cardio workout for toning? How much cardio is too much?
I have been receiving all these questions and I do not even like cardio. Say what?! Yep, I have never been a big fan of cardio exercises. Why? I just do not seem to enjoy it as much as weight training.
Having said that, I do things I do not necessarily enjoy, because they help me stay fit, and cardio is certainly on that list.
If you need to lose a lot of weight, you may already know that it is a good idea to limit your cardio exercises to walking, rollerblading, ice skating, swimming or bicycling, because running puts too much stress on the joints.
To prevent muscle loss, I usually prescribe relatively short (30 minutes) cardio sessions. However, did you know that in some cases, too much cardio could actually be good for you?
I am talking about those times – when no matter what you do, you cannot seem to overcome a weight loss plateau – or maybe to reach your weight loss goal, you just need to lose those few stubborn pounds.
When we diet or use the same exercises for an extended period, the body has a tendency to adapt rather quickly to these challenges. How is this relevant to your cardio workout? When we use the same cardio routines for more than 2 weeks, the body starts to burn fewer calories.
One way to overcome this is to “confuse” your body by increasing intensity of your cardio exercises. If you can accomplish this, there is a good chance you will push through your weight loss plateau.
In other words, if you have been doing your cardio for 30 minutes three times a week for at least two weeks, I recommend you try two 30-minute cardio sessions three times a week.
Alternatively, you can keep doing only one cardio session per day, but increase the number of cardio days from three to six, in a given week. One thing to remember here is to use this technique in moderation – no more than two weeks.