Thursday, December 17, 2009

Avoiding boredom on a longer cardio session

So tonight my game plan was 40 minutes on the elliptical.

Why 40 minutes? In my experience, I just burn fat more when I add a couple longer sessions of cardio into my week. But this does not mean mindless walking on a treadmill or lazily pedaling a stationary bicycle. No sir. My time is valuable so I need to make each opportunity I have to workout count big.

Because it's easy to struggle with "cardio boredom" I thought I'd share with you my workout tonight.

First 7:30 minutes - forward elliptical movement
7:30- 10:00 - reverse cardio movement, hands on steady bars
10:00 - 11:30 - forward elliptical movement, bent at waist to target glutes (flat back, abs in!)
11:30 - 17:30 - forward elliptical movement
17:30 - 20:00 - reverse elliptical movement
20:00 - 21:30 - forward elliptical movement, bent at waist
21:30 - 27:30 - forward elliptical movement
27:30 - 30:00 - reverse elliptical movement
30:00 - 31:30 - forward elliptical movement, bent at waist
31:30 - 35:00 - up the intensity and level
35:00 - 37:30 - up the level and remove hands from bars - push hard
37:30 - 39:00 - reverse elliptical movement
39:00 - 40:00 - forward elliptical movement

Again, you do not want to just "go through the motions." Push yourself. If you're doing a treadmill workout, try jogging for a few minutes, hills for a few minutes, walking fast for a few minutes, working in some arm exercises, etc. Not only will this keep you physically challenged, it works to mentally break up the time - which is an essential skill for completing a marathon (our goal in the end, remember?)

You'll also notice I pumped up the intensity at the end of the workout. Why? I believe, as much as possible, making the second half and end of the workout harder than the beginning. It helps develop stamina and mental toughness. Don't fizzle out at the end, sprint hard.

Photo credit Jos van Galen

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