Most of us do our cardio on machines like the treadmill, stepper, elliptical trainer or stationary bike at the gym. The thought of doing cardiovascular training outside probably never occurs to most bodybuilders. That’s for joggers! Actually, you might find that you enjoy doing cardio outdoors, once you break down and give it a try.
Sure, you’re used to doing cardio in the gym, where the temperature is always the same and you’re probably glued to a little plasma screen. No amount of entertainment or distraction, however, changes one simple and undeniable fact: You’re not going anywhere! You’re walking a treadmill to nowhere or running in place, climbing stairs with no top landing. No wonder so many bodybuilders consider cardio more boring than watching paint dry.
Once the weather warms up a little and you get a day with no snow or ice on your local jogging track, do yourself a favor and head out. Many bodybuilders have found that interval-style cardio—alternating periods of sprinting and fast walking—burns a lot of bodyfat in a short time. Be sure to warm up thoroughly with a couple laps of fast walking before you start. Most tracks have marked start and finish points on the straightaways for sprinting. A very easy way to structure your cardio is to sprint on these, and walk quickly between them. If you need to, keep walking until your breathing is down to a manageable level before sprinting again. You can get a cardio workout in about 20 minutes that would take you at least 45 minutes on any machine. Plus, you’re outside in the fresh air. If it’s a bit chilly, so much the better. Your body will have to work harder to maintain its normal core temperature of 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, burning even more calories in the process.
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