Cardio and Core Workout: Get It!
Happy Workout Wednesday, everyone, and welcome to one of our favorite workouts! Everyone has a different approach to training, and it may take a trial with every single one of those to find out what works for you, but one popular tactic is taking care of two important aspects at once. Combining core and cardio can be effective, since they’re extremely important to overall health, but can be painstakingly boring. It’s like vacuuming and scooping litter at the same time, in a way.
Now, to be clear, core refers to exercises that will help strengthen muscles throughout your abdomen, on your front and back. That means, you’ll be working your abs, obliques, lower back, hips and even glutes since they all work closely with one another when you’re performing more complex, or demanding, exercises and activities. Cardio is a misunderstood and overused word that we’ll use today to refer to exercises that will help you elevate your heart rate significantly in an effort to either burn fat or increase your athletic performance by building endurance. I hope that explanation makes sense.
The approach here is to keep your rest periods shorter than during a normal gym workout. The rest periods need to be long enough that you can complete your reps (in your rep range) but short enough that your heart rate doesn’t fall too far out of your target heart rate zone. For example, if you’re a younger, competitive athlete, aim for a heart rate of 75% of your max heart rate. At the same time, we don’t want you to get too caught up in the numbers here, but more so, the overall approach.
Additionally, while performing every exercise, be extremely mindful about engaging your core. That means, during exercises that primarily focus on your lower body, brace your core (sort of like you’re flexing your abs in the mirror) at all times. It might take some time to multi-task like that, but start slow until you figure it out. Rep ranges are generally around 20-30 here, as opposed to our “heavier” core workout, which you can look at HERE, but do not sacrifice proper form to rush out a few more reps. That is how you’ll get hurt. We’re performing 4 rounds of super sets (super sets are two exercises performed back to back), and here they are.
1. Jump Rope – Mountain Climbers
2. Quick Feet (Lateral Hop) – Decline Crunch
3. Bosu Reptile (Knee to elbow in plank) – Quick Feet (Front-Back Shuffle)
4. 100m row – Reverse Crunch
5. Slam Ball Slam – Kettlebell Swing
6. Abdominal Crunch – Treadmill Sprint
7. Hip Adduction – Hip Abduction
8. Alternating Wood Choppers
If you’re not a fan of certain exercises, sub them out. If you want to focus on your lower back more, go for it. If you don’t have a rower, do pull ups. The possibilities are endless. Use the structure, set the pace and maintain high standards for your performance. If you do a good job, you’ll be exhausted, free of pain, and feel it the next day or two. You can have the biggest arms in the world, but if you can’t carry your body weight properly, you’re not hungry and fit!