We all know that getting into an exercise routine is a good thing!  And while the gym is essential for strength and fitness, it’s always good to add cardio into the mix too!  The problem we’re seeing however, is that lots of people get into what we call “workout ruts”—routines that repeat the same activities over and over.  And it makes sense that people get into these grooves! If you’re a runner, you’re going to want to hit the trails all over Mount Pleasant and Charleston!  If you’re a rower, you’ll hit the water.  But what we’re seeing is that people are doing TOO MUCH of the same thing, which leads to fatigue and injury!

So this week we’re focusing on WHY IT’S IMPORTANT TO MIX UP YOUR CARDIO!

Mixing up your Cardio—Helps you Lose those Last Few Pounds

One Medical quotes expert Arnold Lee, MD: “When you do the same activity all the time, your body gets used it and becomes very efficient.  Eventually, that adaptation will mean that you burn fewer calories even when you’re doing the same amount of exercise.

“The solution: Challenge you body in a way that it’s not used to. Your body will have to work harder as it adjusts to the new activity, which means that you’ll burn more calories when you work out. And don’t forget to eat sensibly; regular exercise and a healthy diet are both important for weight loss.”

Mixing up your Cardio—Helps Protect your Muscles and Joints

Health Magazine warns that doing too much of the same thing can cause injury.  They quote Joe Holder, a Nike trainer and a performance coach at S-10 Training in New York City: “Some  achiness (aka delayed onset muscle soreness) is normal, but this symptom shouldn’t be chronic. If you’re always sore, your body isn’t repairing properly. Recovery only happens when your muscles and nervous system get the nutrients and rest they need to adapt to fitness.”

So essentially, in order to get the most of your workouts, you need to alternate high and low intensity cardio to give your muscles and joints time to recover.

Mixing up your Cardio—Helps You Keep You Coming Back

Shape reminds us that it’s not just our body that can get bored with a workout.  They site Robert Sherman, a master trainer for Reebok University: “If you have a program that keeps surprising and taxing your body, you can avoid those plateaus — not to mention keep your fitness workouts from getting stale and boring.”  And we all know that if a workout becomes boring, it becomes a chore and we are a LOT less likely to want to do it.