Do you want to get into cardio? Whether it’s been a while or you’ve never included it in your routine before, there’s always time to start. We’ve got some tips below, but the best way to get into a new fitness routine is by speaking to a member of the gym team. They’re always ready to help and can give you personalised advice that suits you best.
You shouldn’t expect to jump straight into running multiple kilometres. This makes the likelihood of injury higher, and recovery much longer and means you’re at a higher risk of burning out before your body gets used to it.
As part of this, remember to warm up! You might not be using weights but a warm-up is just as essential when you’re going into a cardio session.
Create personal goals
Starting a new fitness routine, and importantly sticking to it hinges on your motivation. Setting clear goals that work for you and keep you in a positive mindset is essential to picking up a new cardio habit.
Your goals could be anything if it means something to you. Perhaps there is a race you want to take part in, or maybe adding in cardio if for your heart health.
Try a variety of exercises
There’s no one size fits all with exercise, and cardio is no exception. Not everyone will enjoy the same types of cardio, so it’s important you try a few to get a feel for them and find the one that excites you. Once you’ve gotten comfortable with the basics, you can start to explore different types of cardio.
There’s also a multitude of ways you can use each of the bits of cardio equipment in the gym, so if running at full pelt isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of other things you can try on a treadmill. Here are some options:
- Treadmill HIIT workouts
- Cycling or spin bikes
- Box jumps
- Walking at an incline
- Skipping rope
- Stair climber machine
- Elliptical machine
Go with low-impact options
Exercises like circuits with lots of jumps and running are fantastic ways to get your cardio in, but they can be quite high impact and this doesn’t suit everyone. Whether you just don’t like high impact or you want to take it easier on your joints, starting with low impact options or even always sticking to them can help your body with recovery and reduce injury. Lower impact options like walking at an incline instead of running still get your heart rate up just as high.
With all new habits, the only way to see improvements is to stay consistent. Be realistic with your scheduling, don’t aim to do cardio 5 days a week if that doesn’t already work with your current routine. Swap out a bit of your current workout routine for cardio or try and add in three 30-minute sessions a week if you don’t have one yet.