Want to save money? Craving convenience? Or maybe you’re allergic to the gym?
Whatever your reasons, opting to exercise cardio at home is a great alternative to heading to the gym. After all, constant trips to the gym require more cash and commitment than many of us can afford.
While deciding to get fit at home is an easy choice to make, the more difficult problem is figuring out how to get fit and healthy at home.
That’s where we come in to help. Here are six easy ways to get cardio at home.
1. Body Weight Exercises
The simplest and most affordable option is to do bodyweight exercises that don’t require any equipment at all.
There’s a selection of different bodyweight exercises that can help you gain strength, improve endurance, and slash calories. To challenge your body and burn those calories, circuit training is a great idea. By switching from one exercise to another without rest, you keep your heart racing, burn lots of calories, and get the most out of your workout.
While you can opt for cardio on its own, you can also alternate with strength training too.
For cardio, choose exercises with varying levels of intensity. For example, you could begin with a high-intensity routine of jumping jacks or burpees, moving on to an easier exercise like marching in one spot.
Depending on your experience, you’ll need to choose the length of each exercise too. Beginner? Then it might be best to begin with 10-30 seconds or 8-16 reps.
Fitness fanatic? Then you might opt for 60-90 second or 20 plus reps.
To time your workout, use a stopwatch or use a timer on your phone. Pop on some motivating tunes and begin with a simple exercise to warm up and stretch those muscles.
2. Watch Exercise Videos
For more structured home cardio workouts, you can’t go wrong with an exercise video or DVD. Exercise tapes have upgraded from the shiny leopards and funky headbands of the 80s VHS, and today many highly regarded celebrities have a fitness DVD to coach you through your workout.
There are workouts to suit everyone, appealing to people of every age, gender, fitness goal, and niche interest. The best thing about workout videos and DVDs is that you can watch them from the comfort of your living room, and there are thousands and thousands to select from. That means you’re bound to find one that works for you.
However, this is also one of the negatives of exercise videos. As there are so many options to choose from, searching for the right workout can be quite time consuming and overwhelming.
While you can have a dig around in charity shops, today you’ll find that many of the best workouts are sold exclusively online. However, if you do discover a bargain in a thrift shop, the likelihood is that you can pick it up for just a couple of dollars. If you’re looking for a specific workout, head to Amazon and you’re sure to find it there.
3. Stream Workouts Online
Home cardio is made even simpler with the plethora of online workouts available for streaming. While not all workouts are created equally on the internet, if you do your research properly, you can discover almost anything exercise-related you’d like to know online.
Not only can you stream cardio workouts, but you can learn how to set up a home gym, how to craft an exercise program, and how to learn the basics of cardio.
There are tons of websites that provide both paid and free online classes and exercise regimes. However, of course, expect the paid online classes to be of higher quality. You’ll discover workouts that you can print, browse online, and download to your computer or other devices.
YouTube offers some great freebies and there are thousands upon thousands of workout videos to choose from. In many of them, teachers go through a warmup and cool down practice that’s easy to dismiss or forget about if you’re training solo.
Why not break up your cardio with other types of exercise, such as yoga and strength training too? You’ll find streaming videos for this as well!
4. Try Fitness Apps
Back in the day, the only thing our phone could do was make calls. Nowadays, downloadable smartphone apps allow users to do everything from playing games to exercising. Devices like smartphones, iPads, and MP3 players are great for those that prefer working out at home, especially for those that get bored doing the same cardio routine day after day.
On today’s apps users can discover guided workouts, timers, paced music, and so much more. All these features can make home workouts more exciting and can inject a dose of fun into the routine.
For cardio workouts, some of the best apps include BeatBurn Treadmill, Outdoor Trainer, and BeatBurn Elliptical. These both work on the iPhone or iPad and you’ll need a treadmill or elliptical at home to use them.
Those that do use a treadmill or elliptical at home know that workouts can get boring quickly. However, BeatBurn offers users guided interval workouts featuring music and a lively teacher who’ll enthusiastically tell you when to change your settings during the workout.
The New Year is a great time to look out for fitness apps, as there are a lot of fantastic free workout apps on offer that appear in the top pick’s sections. That’s because everyone’s desperate to get healthy and lose some pounds after the indulgent festive season!
5. Play Exergames
While we may associate video games with couch potatoes, that’s certainly not always the case nowadays. In recent years there’s been more and more introduction of exergames that require players to stand up and get physical.
These exergames include EA Sports Active, Everybody Dance, and Gold’s Gym Dance Workout, and a whole lot more. Not only do exergames make workouts more convenient, but they’re also a lot of fun and are a great motivation to get moving.
It’s important to note, however, that not all exergames offer enough intensity or action to count as an effective workout. For example, Wii Fit and Wii Fit Plus are great incentives to get moving but using them alone isn’t enough to get fit and lose weight.
When playing these games, you’ll need to supplement with traditional workouts for the best health benefits.
6. Use Home Exercise Equipment
Have you always dreamed of having a home gym, complete with all the mod-cons? Well, you can get halfway there by investing in a few affordable versions of gym equipment.
Have a look on Amazon, for example, where you can find running machines for a reasonable price and skipping ropes that are cheap as chips.
For better equipment, you can choose to invest in quality pieces, or you can look on swap shop websites for equipment that needs rehoming. In many cases, you can find old gym pieces that are being given away for free or at a super low price. This often happens when people replace their equipment or are moving and need to get rid of it.
Choose some smaller or less expensive pieces of gear to complete your home gym. These can include exercise mats, weights, and resistance bands. You’ll be surprised at how much of a motivation it can be having the props available to help with a routine.
Before you know it, you’ll have an inspiring gym space that didn’t cost much to put together.
Ready for Cardio at Home?
Whether you’ve decided to work out for the first time in your life or you’ve decided to become stricter on your routine, starting a new exercise regime can be scary.
And when you have a full-time job and family and relationship commitments, heading to the gym daily can seem like an impossible task.
That’s why practicing cardio at home with these tips is so beneficial. Not only is working out at home convenient, but it’s also a money-saver too. Plus, with all the options of working out at home, it doesn’t need to be boring either.
For many individuals, it can be easy to dismiss regular workouts at home because there’s no worry of letting someone down. But it’s important to stay motivated and remember that the only person you’re letting down when you don’t show up is yourself. If you struggle with this, then opt for an online trainer to guide and motivate you through your workout, helping you stay consistent.
Want more fitness advice? Discover more on our website here.