Getting back into Cardio | Blogmas Day 2

Hey there good people. Welcome to Blogmas Day 2. I thought todays post could be about fitness; call it Fitness Friday if you will.

So, after taking a little bit of time away from cardio after pulling a hamstring playing basketball (for the SECOND time). It’s time to get back on to it. But how do you do that? Surely you’re conditioned enough to just go for it in all those intense cardio sessions again Ash?

You couldn’t be more wrong.

Getting back into your cardio training can be a daunting task for a lot of people, as well as a painful one, both physically and mentally. It’s not easy to come to terms with the fact that you may not be where you used to be. But the key is to adapt as best that you can and to be patient.

To start with I put cardio into two different categories. Now there is no science in this before you all jump down my throat this is just the way I like to think about it.

Category One

Calorie Burn (or steady state cardio)

This category mainly involves what I would call hitting those number displays. Time, distance, calories burnt. These normally consist of a long, steady and constant pace. It’s normally a sweaty affair spent in an around your fat burning zone.

Category Two

Athletic Cardio (or High Intensity Interval Training aka HIIT)

This category normally involves killing the numbers. So much so, that they don’t even matter. High heart rate. High work rate. High exertion. Normally a short sharp session, minimal rest times, involving a more ballistic and dynamic approach. A mixed bag of, intervals and circuits style training.

But to start with I try and stay away from the really intense stuff until I really crunch out a good steady state session.

I also believe that improving your core is one of the key factors for improving your cardio. So why not do both at the same time. If you’ve ever taken on a cardio session after a core workout that might’ve left you feeling a little sore, you quickly realise how much work your core really has to do.

So here is a cardio core workout that will help to strengthen your core and in turn help that cardio feel a little bit easier.

Warm up

1.     Crunches 2 x 20 reps

2.     Oblique Crunches 2 x 20 reps each side

3.     Plank 2 x 30 seconds

4.     Side plank 2 x 30 seconds each side

Cardio of your choice 10mins (RPE 5-6, 1 being easy, 10 being extremely difficult)

1.     Crunches 1 x 25 reps

2.     Oblique Crunches 1 x 20 each side

3.     Plank 1 x 45 seconds

4.     Side plank 1 x 30 seconds each side

Cardio of your choice 10 minutes (RPE 6-7)

Repeat as desired (dependant on the time you have)

Cool down and stretch

For the intermediates: add 5 minutes to the cardio time

For the advanced: add 10 minutes to the cardio time

Now, you have to remember that this workout is to help slowly build yourself up to the level that you desire. Allow your body to become accustomed to the workout before stepping it up. This is not a ‘leave yourself in a sweaty mess workout’, this is a ‘Category one’ workout. A chance for your body to adapt efficiently to the type of changes you are trying to make to your routine without hurting yourself.

Your recovery routine is also vital. Cooling down, stretching, foam rolling and your post exercise nutrition will help you along the way.

Until next time,

Ash