Cardio is an essential part of any sports routine. Cardio (a sport that significantly increases the heart rate and makes you sweat) has many benefits: to let off steam, to slim down, to increase the heart rate and thus to prevent many cardiovascular diseases.
Everything you need to know about cardio
Cardio has many advantages, depending on where it is practiced: outdoors or in nature, it is ideal for promoting good oxygenation. At home, it saves time, allows you to practice at any time, keep an eye on the kids or the cooking of dinner, and also, not to worry about the looks of others. So many good arguments to get started and start exercising from home.
The basic rules of cardio
As in the gym, it is imperative to warm up properly, to hydrate before/during and after exercise and to stretch after each session.
Don’t neglect your clothing: good leggings and a bra for women, but above all good sneakers to absorb shocks and protect your joints.
To do sports at home, you must first of all air the room well, in order to be well oxygenated but also to avoid humidification and bad air quality through your perspiration and your breath. Move the furniture out of the way, create a small space for yourself to move freely and off you go.
At home, you can equip yourself with cardio machines. You have a wide range of choices:
- the exercise bike ;
- elliptical trainer ;
- the treadmill;
It’s up to you to find the one that makes you feel most comfortable.
Ideally, you should exercise for a minimum of 45 minutes. The rowing machine is the most efficient machine sport: it uses a lot of energy and works almost all your muscles. If you are able to do so, practicing in the morning on an empty stomach will be even more effective.
Doing cardio without equipment
Don’t have the space or the budget? Dancing is the ultimate cardio workout to do at home. Start the playlist of your favorite singer and let loose. There are many online dance classes to choose from for a variety of choreography.
If you have an outdoor space, bring out the jump rope from your childhood: there is no better cardio.
Stairs are also a good playground: going up and down them trains your thighs and calves while getting your heart pumping.
Finally, many cardio fitness videos are available on online platforms to inspire you and follow a ready-made program.
Cardio exercises at home
Here is a small cardio exercise program to do at home without equipment, in short sessions, which will be effective quickly.
The knee raise exercise consists of running on the spot while bringing the knees as high as possible towards the chest, it is a very effective cardio exercise that will also work the legs and abdominal muscles. 30 seconds are enough to warm up.
Everyone knows push-ups. It is a widespread exercise and yet difficult to perform. Don’t hesitate to do push-ups with your knees on the ground if it’s too difficult for you.
Duration: 30 seconds, do the maximum number of repetitions, then recover 10 seconds.
An effective exercise for cardio if you have medical clearance for jumping jacks, and if your downstairs neighbors are away from home: feet together, arms at your sides, you must jump by raising your arms and at the same time spreading your legs. Then jump again by lowering your arms and bringing your legs together. The faster you go, the more effective the exercise. The coordination will come with time.
Duration: 30 seconds, do as many repetitions as possible, then recover 10 seconds.
The mountain climber (or climber’s exercise) will allow you to work dynamically the lower limbs of your body but also the abdominal strap and the upper limbs of your body.
Position yourself facing the ground, leaning on your hands and toes. Your legs and arms are straight, hands at shoulder level, in a push-up position. Make sure you have correct segmental alignment (thighs-pelvis-trunk aligned), abs and glutes contracted, facing the ground. Bend one leg while keeping the other well stretched, always leaning on your toes. The exercise then consists in bringing back quickly and alternatively the left knee then the right knee towards the front. To give you an image, it is as if you were starting a race, running on the spot.