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Physical fitness definition of cardio

Our heart is a muscle. As all other muscles, it benefits from physical exercises, making it stronger and helping it perform better. Cardiovascular or, short, cardio exercises are the best type of physical activity for boosting your heart's health, raising your heartbeats per minute and burning the fat you have in your body. Basically, all you need is exercising up to 5 times a week for not more than 30 or 40 minutes. Moreover, if you combine a healthy diet and overall lifestyle with cardio workouts, you are bound to increase the quality of your life significantly, along with the health of your heart.

Cardio Routine

Every cardiovascular activity burns a certain number of calories, within a given time frame, depending on your body weight and the intensity of the exercise routine itself. Thus, you are advised to modify your cardio workout and find the routine best for your purposes. Once you manage to do this, stick to it and reap the benefits. Moreover, you are advised to mix the cardio exercising with strength training through weight lifting. Thus, a day of cardiovascular activity should optimally be followed by a day of strength training, allowing you to have toned and strong muscles in a healthy body.

Cardiovascular Exercises

Running is one of the best cardio activities around. In order to enjoy and take advantage of this activity you need nothing more than a good pair of running shoes. So, you do not need to organize your life so that you reach the gym every day. Rather, get out of the house and exercise around the block. Alternatively, go to a nearby park and enjoy your workout there. The first stage of running allows your body to burn most calories and prolonged running sequence makes your body produce endorphins, making you feel happy and satisfied, filled with euphoric sensation. When you do it right, running allows you to burn up to 300 calories in half an hour.

Instead of running, you can use cross trainers and program your desired activity, working on both your arms and legs simultaneously. You can exercise at home, anytime you want, burning up to 300 calories in 30 minutes.

Alternatively, aerobics takes cardiovascular exercising on a whole new level, raising your heartbeats quickly and activating many of your body's muscles, burning up to 400 calories in half an hour.

If the impact on your joints is too great once you indulge into the exercises mentioned above, swimming may be the best choice for you. Crawl, butterfly and breast strokes are the most recommended swimming techniques for cardiovascular activity, allowing you to burn the same number of calories as when you do aerobics.

Speaking of low impact, cycling is one of the safest and best ways of getting your heart to pump more blood and your body to breathe more fresh air. Based on the incline and the intensity of your workout, cycling can help you get rid of up to 500 calories in 30 minutes.

Finally, you can combine different high and low intensity workouts. For example, start with walking, evolve into jogging and enter high intensity sprinting, only to gradually return to the initial, low intensity state. Do this for about 15 minutes, changing the intervals every 2 minutes and the effects will be great in the long run.

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