When it comes to cardio workouts, it’s natural to want to maximize the impact of your workout and feel great. All too often, people make common cardio mistakes when they’re at the gym that can actually sabotage their ability to meet fitness goals and leave the scale stuck at its present numbers. Boost your performance with these 5 ways to burn more calories during a cardio workout.
Burn More Calories Doing Cardio
- Rethink your form – With any cardio workout, you will burn more calories and feel better when you are using proper form. Too often, people pick up bad habits, such as leaning on the stairmaster or treadmill handles for support. Not only can poor form cause injury, it can diminish your workout’s impact. If you’re unsure whether you’re doing it right, find a staff member who can demonstrate the proper form for any cardio machine and help to get you working most effectively.
- Work your whole body – Simply by moving your entire body instead of just your legs, you’ll maximize the calories burned while doing cardio. If you’re running or power walking, pump your arms to increase your body movement. On an elliptical, grasp the hand poles to work your arms. To tone your ams and engage your core while using a stationary bike, slightly bend your arms and do a push-up movement toward the handlebars.
- Up the intensity – It’s natural to fall into a comfortable routine during your cardio workouts, especially if your gym has television on every machine and you’ve found a new favorite show to watch. Too often, gym-goers don’t really push themselves during that 30-minute run. Increase your speed, your resistance, or the incline to challenge yourself out of your comfort zone and increase your workout’s intensity.
- Diversify your workout – Sticking to the same “tried and true” cardio workout is one of the biggest cardio mistakes. Over time, your body acclimates to the treadmill or elliptical and what was a challenge for you no longer is. If you find yourself favoring the same machine each time you hit the gym, it’s time to change up your cardio workouts. Make it a point to spend time on a new machine every week. Bonus: You won’t be bored during your workout.
- Focus on the task at hand – While listening to music, watching television, or reading will make your workout go by faster, it’s important to remember why you’re there. Maintain focus on the cardio workout and don’t let any entertainment distract you from working your hardest. Integrating mindfulness into your workout can help you notice when your attention has wandered from your routine and gently shift your focus back to your body movement.
Shredding more calories through smarter cardio workouts can help you feel great while making real progress toward your fitness goals. To really have the biggest impact, don’t neglect strength training or healthy eating, which go hand in hand with calorie loss in creating a meaningful change. If you need more tips on how to maximize your time at the gym, we’re happy to help you.