Cardio: Is it necessary?
Well, of course it is!
Do I have to run 5 miles a week? Can I skip cardio days? I thought cardio is for women only! I don’t even understand why people ask this question! Cardio is an important part of a workout plan. It helps you recover quicker, enhances metabolic response to food and helps a lot to reduce fat layers.
Cardio for DOMS And Metabolism
When you work out, you muscle fibers suffer microscopic trauma, which produces lactic acid and deposition of lactic acid causes Delayed Onset Of Muscle Soreness (DOMS). DOMS can be reduced by increasing blood circulation which provides nutrition on time and increases rate of muscle repair. Cardio improves blood circulation, thus improving muscle building time and reducing soreness.
Like many of us know, not everything we eat or drink is absorbed by our body. Many of these nutrient get converted into fat or become waste. The key to improve is testosterone levels, a hormone responsible for metabolism. It improves insulin sensitivity, which forces our body into anabolic state, thus improving muscle mass.
So, have you changed your opinion about cardio? If so, let us help you.
Effective cardio tips.
Gym is the last place when it comes to cardio, especially that dreadful treadmill. I know there are many advocates of the treadmill, including Hollywood stars, but it isn’t that good! The surface of treadmill is hard, which provides no cushion when your foot lands on it (which is why you also avoid roads). A hard surface can cause many problems like Lateral collateral ligament tear (name as long as the injury), shin splints (common in runners) and many such problems. Similar is the case with stair-masters, they tend to injure you knees. Elliptical or cross trainers, stationary cycles are a good alternative if you hell-bent on working indoors.
But the best way to get you dose of cardio, is to go outside. Running on grounds, doing sprints, hiking, cycling outdoors, swimming, learning martial arts or just following a sport. Running on grounds with variations like sprints is a good example of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). HIIT is extremely beneficial as it reduces fat storage very fast and enhances anabolic activities. Going for a long run or walk, hiking is a good low intensity cardio exercise. Doing martial arts, boxing, kick-boxing will not only improve your explosive strength, but will also improve self-defense and confidence. And of course, swimming is the best cardio you can do. Swimming recruits every muscle of the body, improves anaerobic stamina (very important for fat-loss) and helps in increasing will power.
Mix It UP!
Don’t repeat same exercises every time you plan a cardio day in your workout regime. It is detrimental to the body and you become really bored. There are so many cardio-vascular exercises you can find out there, try them all. Don’t complicate it, but keep it fresh.
Remember, cardio is a must when it comes to developing serious muscle mass and strength.
So, SWEAT IT OUT!!