This guest post was written by Kate Vidulich, creator of Bodyweight Cardio 500.
Let’s clear something up.
It’s been drummed into all of us that ALL cardio is evil. Just like sugar, fat, and everything else delicious. 😉
But don’t get confused.
The term “cardio” doesn’t just mean “aerobic exercise at the same slow, boring pace”. It’s short for “cardiovascular conditioning”, and bodyweight exercises, sprints and other fancy name workouts are just as beneficial to your heart and lungs.
If you think it’s impossible to sweat buckets in under five minutes, you haven’t tried the insane 500 rep Bodyweight Cardio Challenge. More on that in just a minute.
3 Tips For a Better Bodyweight Cardio Workout
You don’t need a gym membership to sculpt a lean sexy body. In fact, you don’t even need equipment. But hey, you’re an SOA follower, so you probably already know that!
Here are my top 3 tips for getting more out of your conditioning workout.
When it comes to burning more calories and preserving lean muscle mass, interval training is KING. But pay close attention to your work to rest ratio, especially for fat loss.
Ideally, you should aim for 20 to 45 seconds of hard work. That tells your body that you’re not doing lame cardio, but fat-burning high-intensity intervals, so you’ll burn more calories post workout.
Unfortunately, too many men and women make their “sprint” intervals too long, so they aren’t getting their intensity high enough. They’re basically doing a glorified steady-state cardio workout! Be careful not to fall into this trap. Keep your intervals short and the intensity high.
2. Use full-body exercises, in non-competing groups
For cardio, you want to choose movements that use non-competing muscle groups. This means that you can pump up the intensity without killing any one muscle group, allowing you to burn more calories faster with total body movements.
Let me explain.
You could do a squat set followed by a push-up set, with minimal rest.
But you would NEVER do a push-up set immediately followed by mountain climbers. Think about it. You’re using the same muscle group to stabilize the mountain climbers (chest and shoulders), so you will fatigue quickly.
3. Limit high-intensity workouts to less than 20 minutes
Working out for too long, or everyday, can cause a shift in your hormones that actually causes you to STORE more fat.
The bad guy is cortisol, a hormone that actually promotes fat storage AND muscle breakdown. Research has shown that longer workouts are responsible for increasing cortisol levels in your body, which shuts down fat burning.
So, if you’re not seeing the results you want, it’s not your fault. You just need to “shift” your hormones into fat-burning mode with shorter workouts.
One more thing. Avoid doing more than four days of high-intensity training per week. Any more than that and you’re placing too much stress on the body, which will also eventually lead to fat gain. Even pro athletes don’t play hard everyday, so why should we?
Now, back to the insane 500 rep Bodyweight Cardio Challenge.
You will NOT need a single piece of equipment. If you’ve ever picked up a program, thinking you were getting “no equipment” workouts only to find out that you actually needed a pull-up bar, a stability ball, a treadmill, and so on… You’ll be glad to know that won’t be the case here.
This workout is designed to challenge your cardiovascular system and speed up fat loss, just like hard sprints do. But the big difference? You can do this routine at home.
And the best part is that this workout will significantly improve your aerobic capacity, just like jogging a few miles on the treadmill at a moderate pace would.
Let’s rock this!
The Bodyweight Cardio 500 Challenge
Do as many rounds as possible in 7 minutes, resting only as necessary. If your form gets sloppy, take a break.
Your goal is to complete 2 rounds (500 reps) in less than 7 minutes!
- Bodyweight Squats x 50
- Invisible Jump Rope x 50
- Push-ups x 25
- Split Shuffle x 50 on each side
- Cross-body Mountain Climbers x 25 on each side
- Jumping Jacks x 50
You’ll probably be familiar with most of the exercises, but the Split Shuffle might be new to you. Here’s how to do it:
If you’re new to bodyweight training, make sure to take extra rest breaks and focus on quality movements.
You can use this bodyweight formula to get faster fat loss results. You will NOT need to train seven days a week… or six… or even five, for that matter. Plus, you can burn fat and preserve muscle anywhere with these workouts.
Bodyweight Cardio 500 is the first and only workout program that takes just 20 minutes to burn a whopping 500 calories, without killing your knees. With this program, you need literally ZERO equipment to rapidly lose fat.
You’ll also notice a dramatic difference in your metabolism after just ONE workout, and your body will start changing in days.
If you liked this workout, check out the NEW Bodyweight Cardio 500 workouts, which also take only 20 minutes or less.
The best part? You’ll never suffer from cardio boredom again!
To your success,
Kate Vidulich is the creator of Bodyweight Cardio 500. Kate is an experienced exercise physiologist and certified ACSM health fitness specialist. Kate has an extensive research background, completing a Bachelor of Science degree in Health & Exercise Science from the University of NSW in Sydney, Australia.
Her unique approach, combining movement rehabilitation and fat loss, has helped thousands of people across the world achieve their goals, at all ages. Kate has been featured in Reader’s Digest, Shape Magazine and other fitness publications in Australia.