Rest 3 minutes
This excellent workout combines both aerobic endurance and anaerobic strength work, exercising muscles of the entire body in a challenging circuit style. Pick the cardio activity you prefer (running, biking, elliptical, walking). Click on the RPE link for an explanation of intensity. Click on the individual exercises to see tutorials on each.
This leads me to a question I am often asked. Should I combine cardio and strength work into one workout, and if so, why? The easy answer would be “yes”, for 2 reasons. One, I am a firm believer in functional fitness. That means that I want your exercises to make you better at carrying on the tasks of your everyday life. I want you to challenge your body in your workouts in the same fashion that you challenge your body in your regular activities. Most physically demanding tasks we perform require some combination of cardiovascular endurance and muscle strength, so combining the two into one workout will only enhance those abilities. Plus, since you need both kinds of exercise anyway, why not do them together and maximize time? Two, it is a great way to boost calorie expenditure. Keeping the heart rate elevated throughout the workout keeps the engine running and burning fuel. Strength work interspersed with your cardio takes the challenge up a notch, and provides an anabolic (building) stimulus that counteracts the catabolic (breaking down) stimulus that cardio alone provides. This will keep your metabolism up and muscle mass intact while dropping body fat, and keep you from plateauing in your goals. This doesn’t mean that every workout has to be structured this way. There are benefits to doing the strength work and cardio separately, but it is an effective tool for many seeking to increase the challenge and functionality of their workout routine and break through some plateaus. Enjoy!