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Cardio 101 - The Facts About Cardio

Cardio Basics

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Updated June 06, 2014

Cardio Frequency
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With a large percentage of Americans overweight, it's clear that many of us are not following the most recent exercise guidelines prescribing up to an hour of exercise each day. In fact, there was no doubt a collective groan when people realized they would now have to find an hour each day to do something they can't seem to find 5 minutes for. How important are these guidelines and what can you do to make them fit into your life?

The Simple Facts About Cardio

Before we talk about how much cardio you should do, you should at least know why it's so important. Cardiovascular exercise simply means that you're involved in an activity that raises your heart rate to a level where you're working, but can still talk (aka, in your Target Heart Rate Zone). Here's why cardio is so important:

  • It's one way to burn calories and help you lose weight
  • It makes your heart strong so that it doesn't have to work as hard to pump blood
  • It increases your lung capacity
  • It helps reduce risk of heart attack, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes
  • It makes you feel good
  • It helps you sleep better
  • It helps reduce stress
  • I could go on all day, but you get the point

Bottom line: you need cardio if you want to get your weight under control and get your stress to a tolerable level.

Next page Choosing Your Cardio

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