Making Space For Cardio

Running In Glass Shoes Making Space For Cardio

I’m sure by now that you all know that I’m no cardio queen. Having had a fairly dysfunctional relationship with overexercising in the past the pendulum well and truly swung the other way to downright cardio loathing. However, with my current goals and also just for overall health, I know that cardio is something I need to work into my routine. So here are the four things I’ve been doing recently to make cardio workouts a fun and stress-free addition to my workout routine…

Getting Outdoors
I love being outside, and when the weather is good I just can’t resist getting outdoors for a run. I don’t think I can count myself as a die-hard runner any longer so you probably won’t find me out on bone-chilling winter 10ks, but if the weather is mild there’s something really calming about going on a good 45-60minute run. If I’m home in Winchester there’s just no stopping me from getting out either, I just can’t resist a run in the countryside. Add to that the cycle the boy and I did when we were in Bruges was just a wonderful way to spend a day, and I didn’t even reallyΒ realise that I was getting a workout in. So top tip for my fellow cardio loathers: get outdoors, enjoy the scenery and make a day of it.

Join a Class
I surprised myself with this one to be quite honest. I’ve always sworn that I am not a class person, apart from when it comes to yoga of course. But my experience at F45 Tottenham Court Road really changed my mind on this one. I was amazed at how hard I pushed myself and how quickly the time flew by. It’s a bit tight for me to add regular classes in alongside my bikini coaching (which really is the priority) but once I’m based in East London I’m definitely going to look into Class Pass as there are so many awesome exercise classes near my new office. Who knows, I might even visit a spin class. Who even am I?

HIIT the Treadmill
I couldn’t resist the pun. Last week I set myself a challenge to do two treadmill HIIT sessions. Essentially, I give myself 20 minutes, ramp up the incline and sprint as fast as I can for 45 seconds, before hopping off and resting for a minute. It’s a serious pulse raiser and I find it so much more exhilarating than the 45 minute slog, um I mean jog, I used to force myself through. Plus that 20 minute time is great as it’s not overly long and I feel like I can mentally talk myself through it without giving up! As my cardiovascular fitness improves I hope to shorten those rest breaks, increase my pace and eek up the time to 30 minutes. It feels good to have some measurable cardio goals in place thanks to this one.

Running In Glass Shoes Making Space For Cardio HIIT Sprints

Step Up
Probably the simplest of all my added techniques, I have decided to up my daily step goals. I have always enjoyed walking and so this seemed like a really logical and hassle-free way of just raising my total daily energy expenditure without feeling like I was ‘adding in’ cardio. I go for a half an hour walk every lunch time to get those steps in and that has the added benefit of clearing my head from staring at a computer all morning – I definitely recommend doing it. I have also taken some inspiration from my coach and have added in super steep incline power walks on the treadmill if I have time after my weights sessions. It’s amazing how much of a killer those are!

Making Space For Cardio Walking

After doing this I’m now getting in an average of 12,000 steps a day, and according to Fitbit just this simple change has increased my daily calorie burn to being in the 2000s rather than 1800-1900. Can’t really blame me for being pleased with that now can you?!

Let me know how you make cardio fit into your routine, I’m always looking for more fun ideas!

Anna x

Feature image by Kim Nicole Photography

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23 thoughts on “Making Space For Cardio

  1. Great post and very encouraging! I’ve also had an up and down relationship with exercise. I used to be very fit and did a lot of P.E in school but body dysmorphia and eating issues kicked in when I was going on my first holiday at 18 and I’d be at the gym twice a day. It wasn’t healthy at all. Now, I suffer with anxiety and getting too hot / out of breath really makes me anxious. But I know I need to get healthier again. I’ve started doing more yoga, which obviously isn’t cardio (most the time) but it’s a step in the right direction. I don’t like exercising so it’s difficult to find something I want to do!

    1. I found I really had to build up to reintroducing it, so I understand the struggle! When I’m running I really focus on my breathing, that might help with the anxiety? And to be really honest, I think yoga can be great cardio! Love a vinyasa flow class for getting my heart rate up!

  2. Some great tips! I find my Fitbit motivates me so much! I love hitting my step goal every day and like that you can set little reminders to make it buzz at you to remind you to keep moving!
    PaleGirlRambling xo

  3. I’m having a pretty bad body confidence crisis at the moment, I’m on holiday and I’m looking forward to getting back and tackling exercise and healthy eating. I absolutely love classes and I’ve been doing lots of walking while in Melbourne which I’m hoping contributes to the starting point at least! LOVE the pun on the last one, I am a nightmare on a treadmill and become completely uncoordinated ha! Love all the tips in the post, and the action shot pic of you running is ace!
    Kate x
    http://www.findingkate.co

    1. That’s so interesting – I find that exercise has been a real help for my anxiety and has really boosted my self-esteem. Classes can be so fun, perhaps you need a workout buddy! xx

  4. i’m awful when it comes to exercising but i do love going out for a run when i need to clear my head. I love little motivational posts like these, makes me realise i need to get my butt in gear! X

  5. Ironically reading this as I do my warm up in the gym- on the bike. Cycling days out are so good I have to agree, I did a cycling holiday last year and it was so good (and cheap!). I have to do so much exercise to stay on top of my weight I never catch a bus! I think I might go over to the treadmill in a min and try your speedy incline though #girlpower !

    Jen xx

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