You know the feeling- your favorite treadmill is available, you arrange your water bottle, drink and headphones and settle in for at least 30 minutes of uninterrupted walking or jogging. You may find this comforting or tedious. Either way, your body probably finds it boring and repetitive, so it is time to mix things up. Instead of taking root on one machine, bounce from one to another to stimulate different muscles, challenge your cardiovascular system and burn a higher number of calories. For example, a 150-pound person, in 30 minutes, using vigorous effort burns approximately 375, 304 and 286 calories cycling, rowing and walking at 5 mph, respectively.
Why Should You Incorporate Cardio Bouncing During a Workout?
Over time, your body adapts to exercise. It does not need to use more energy, calories, to perform the workout because it has performed it many times before. Compare this to a new job. At first, you have to focus and not think about anything else to do your work. After a while, once you become comfortable with your required tasks, your mind wanders to your family, your shopping lists, etc. You do not have to use as much energy or focus to complete the tasks. Your body works in a similar way. Although you still burn calories regardless of the type of cardio workout you complete, your body does not have to make many changes or use as much energy if you repeat the workout over and over for weeks, months or years at a time.
As an alternative, move from cardio machine to cardio machine to immediately feel the difference in workout intensity. Yes, you can start on your favorite one, for example the treadmill, but stay there for your three to five minute warm up only. Then, pick up your belongings, and head over to a recumbent bike. Set the resistance on a level that is a moderate intensity for you and pedal at a quick pace for five minutes. So long bicycle. You are now moving to the stair climbing machine where you will stand tall and not lean on the machine as you climb to the highest heights for five to seven minutes. Quickly move to the elliptical and set the incline and resistance on a level that feels challenging. Use the arm handles to increase the intensity of your exercise session and pedal at a fast pace forward for three minutes and backward for three minutes. Then, search for that barely used cardio machine. Maybe your gym has a rowing machine, ski machine or an arc trainer that is known for collecting dust. Jump on it and push through the last ten minutes of your workout session. You can return to your comfort zone for your cool down as you walk for five minutes on your favorite treadmill.
This is just one example. Use the various machines your gym has to offer. The goal is to switch things up to keep your mind and body interested. Next workout, switch up the order of the machines to really keep your body guessing. You can keep a steady-state pace on the machines or you can add quick 30-second intervals of speed or incline intensity to continue to use this workout style, but add stimulation variety.