Maybe it rains a lot where you live, or maybe you get shin splints. Maybe you just get bored easily. Whatever the reason you don’t enjoy running is, don’t let it rob you of the incredible benefits of cardiovascular exercise. There are plenty of healthy alternatives to cardio, some of which can be highly enjoyable.
For the purposes of this article, we’ve left out some of the obvious alternatives to running, like cycling, using a stair climber, walking, jumping rope, circuit training, using an elliptical trainer, etc. Instead, we’ve concentrated on ways to get your cardio that might actually be more fun than running. Read on for three alternatives to running that will still get your heart rate in the target zone.
You don’t need to be Napoleon Dynamite to get a good sweat going while getting your groove on. Just put together a play list of your favorite heart-pumping music, and get your body moving. Dancing for thirty minutes can potentially burn more calories than thirty minutes of working out, and certainly can be a whole lot more fun.
If dancing alone at home isn’t your thing, then you can join a class at your local gym, community center, or a nearby college instead.
Participate in a High-Cardio Sport
If you have trouble motivating yourself to participate in solo cardio regardless of how mundane or exciting the activity, then you should consider participating in a high-cardio sport. Tennis, water polo, basketball, and soccer are all solid examples of sports that are both fun and consistently cardio-driven.
Rowing is another example of a terrific sport that gives you a major cardiovascular workout. What better way to exercise than on the water with serene landscapes in the background?
Playing sports is also a great way to take your mind off the fact that you’re exercising in the first place.
These days, you don’t need to own equipment, or drive to suitable geological formations, or actually have any real expertise in climbing to benefit from this fun strength-plus-cardio activity. Your local area most likely has at least one climbing wall, supported by instructors and ready to go with all the safety equipment that you’ll need to make this safe.
And, if you doubt that you can get a cardio workout while inching your way up a series of handholds and footholds, you’ll have to trust us on this one. Time stops when you’re on the wall and every muscle you didn’t know you had suddenly springs into action, sending your heart racing.
Find Your Own Way to Keep Exercising Fun
We all know that we need cardio to stay healthy. It helps to relieve stress, to keep us young, to keep our hearts, minds and bodies fit. But getting motivated to get your cardio in can be a real challenge, especially if the typical cardio exercises are loathsome to you. Try one of our fun ways to get your cardio – and remember, you only have your unwanted weight to lose!