Shake Up Your Cardio Routine

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One practical way to enhance cardio routines is to try them out somewhere other than usual. Jogging on a treadmill is completely unlike jogging outside. Someone who switches from the first to the latter will be challenged by new surfaces underfoot, the elements (e.g., wind), and unpredictable gradients. A person who runs outside already might try cardio in a hillier area that what he or she is used to. Any change that makes a workout more demanding will be wholly worthwhile.

Watch the Clock

Cardio is most effective when done from 20 to 45 minutes at a time. It can actually be dangerous after the 45-minute mark, when a hormone called cortisol increases, putting the exerciser at risk of losing muscle tissue. Timing also counts in regards to food intake.

Cardio is most effective when glycogen levels are low. Hunger is a great indicator of low glycogen levels, so meals should be scheduled at least two hours before workouts. If meals are eaten too soon before workouts, the body will burn recently consumed carbs rather than stored calories. Postponing mealtime is just another way to boost the positive effects of cardio. Now, if only all of them were so easy!