Different Types of Cardio
An Insight Into The Different Types of Cardio You Can Perform
Depending on your goals, you may incorporate a number of different types of cardio into your training regime. This not only helps improve fitness levels but also adds variety to your training helping to keep you motivated and interested. Its also good to remember that the body is good at adapting to certain conditions so placing it under new stress in the form of variety or intensity will help kick start your training routine and allow for better results.
That's take a look at the different types of cardio you can do:
1. Low Intensity, Long Duration
This type of training is the least demanding form of cardio for the body and is carried out for long periods of time at a low intensity. Ideally, this is something slow and easy such as light jogging, walking or cycling. If you consider yourself obese or physically out of shape then this is the choice for you. This type of cardio will allow your body to become accustomed to the type of stress that exercise can place upon your body, allowing you to cope with more intense workouts in the future. Low intensity, long duration cardio is normally carried out at around 40-60% of Your Maximum Heart Rate as reported on this websites, a famous health and fitness website. Once you feel you can handle low intensity workouts without too much trouble you should then step it up a notch and try a medium intensity, medium duration workout.
2. Medium Intensity, Medium Duration
Once you're comfortable with low intensity training, you can then move on to medium intensity, medium duration workouts. These will require your body to work slightly harder and perform movements at a faster pace. As a result, you will notice your body needs to take deeper and quicker breaths. This is due to the fact that your body is working at around 70% of your maximum heart Rate and therefore needs additional oxygen to help it function properly. I would recommend that this type of cardio workout lasts anywhere between 10-30 minutes.
3. High Intensity, Short Duration
This particular type of cardiovascular exercise is intense and involves working the body hard for a short period of time. Maximum effort is applied to a particular exercise such as running or cycling with the body working at around 80-85% of its maximum heart rate. This is very demanding on the body and would recommend you carry it out only when you feel you have obtained a good level of fitness.
4. Interval Training
Interval training can be carried out either aerobically or anaerobically. Aerobic interval training involves combining a mixture of low, medium and high intensity exercises all into one cardio workout. For example, you may go jogging for 5 minutes at a medium intensity, you could then switch to fast running for 3 minutes and then you may choose to walk for 2 minutes. Repeat this cycle for how ever many times desired and you have a classic example of aerobic interval training. Aerobic Interval Training is well suited to sports such as football, tennis and rugby where you are often jogging, sprinting and walking during different periods of the game.
Interval training can also be carried out anaerobically. This can be tough and involves pushing the body to go as fast as it can for short periods of time and then taking a rest period and repeating the routine. For example, you could sprint as fast as you can for 30 seconds, rest for a minute and then repeat the process for as many times as you think necessary.
The anaerobic side of interval training is also good for Building Muscle in your legs as sprinting works the majority of Leg Muscles especially the quads (thighs) and calves. Another interesting point to note is that anaerobic interval training is carried out at intensities of around 85-100% of your body's Maximum Heart Rate so expect to be out of breath and in need of some lengthy rest periods. This type of cardio is often referred to as HIIT Training. HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training. Due to the intensity of these workouts they can actually burn calories in a smaller time frame than any other form of cardio.
5. Fartlek Training
Fartlek training incorporates all of the above training methods into one routine. This is a useful type of cardio to throw in every now and again to prevent boredom creeping into your workouts. It also allows you the chance to test your body against a range of different intensities all in one cardio session.
A typical example would be light jogging for 5 minutes, sprinting for 3 minutes, walking for 2 minutes, running fast for 5 minutes and then sprinting again for the final 2 minutes. Fartlek training can actually work both the aerobic and anaerobic systems of the body as both are put under stress when performing different types of cardio such as jogging and sprinting. Fartlek is also another form of exercise that is well suited to particular sports such as football as you can mimic activities that actually take place during that sport and incorporate them into your Fartlek training routine.
6. Circuit Training
Circuit training can actually be classified as another form of interval training. It combines both cardiovascular and strength training into one routine giving you the added benefits of both workouts. They are usually set up via the use of stations. At each station the athlete is required to perform a different exercise than the previous one. All athletes will need to pass through all stations completing all exercises until they eventually reach the end.
This type of cardio training also has the advantage of working the entire body instead of just focusing on the legs like most other types of cardio do. Weight Training Exercises such as the bench press, bicep curls and leg curls can all be included in the circuit as can cycling, skipping, treadmill work, star jumps, step-ups and push-ups. Performing regular cardio sessions is a great way to drop additional body fat and help burn more calories.