In order to live a truly healthy lifestyle, you must maintain a clean diet and exercise regularly. While there are a multitude of different forms of exercise that you can perform, the two most common routines consist of strength training and cardiovascular exercise. For best results, it’s recommended that you implement both of these forms of exercise into your daily workout regimen. Cardiovascular training can be broken down even further into a number of specific exercises. These Top Cardio Workouts for Weight Loss are simple, fun, and effective.
Just the thought of working out can be extremely intimidating to many people. No matter what your reason is for not exercising, one thing remains the same… These overwhelming feelings can hinder your progress and at times, even make you want to give up for good. We’re not going to let that happen to you!
This comprehensive list of exercises offers such a wide range of options that practically anyone can participate. Performing one or more of these exercises regularly, will ensure that you never get bored with your routine. Enjoying your workouts will keep you motivated and on the path to success!
You may be asking yourself, “Why is it so important that I perform cardio?” This form of exercise is about more than just weight loss. Consistent cardiovascular training can improve your mental, emotional, and physical health. When you know what cardio exercise can do for your health, you will be more inclined to stick to the plan, long-term.
The Importance and Benefits of Cardio Exercise
While accelerating weight loss is a huge factor to performing consistent cardiovascular exercise, it’s certainly not the only reason that you should be doing it. The following benefits of cardio exercise are equally important:
- Improved Heart and Lung Health – Your heart and lungs require consistent training to function at their very best!
- Boost in Mood – Cardiovascular exercise induces an endorphin rush. Endorphins are the body’s feel-good chemicals. These naturally occurring chemicals reduce stress, depression, and anxiety.
- Increased Bone Density – To put it simply, exercise puts (good) stress on the body. As the bones undergo stress, they will go through a process of hardening or rebuilding. The post-exercise recovery period is extremely important. Get your rest!
- Better Sleep – Cardio exercise promotes better sleep because it gets out extra energy and decreases stress & anxiety. It has also been shown to improve daytime alertness and bring about a natural drowsiness at night.
- Increased Energy – Exercise gets your heart pounding and blood pumping. This increases blood flow, circulation, and even improves brain function. You will be focused and full of energy to take on the day!
Top Cardio Workouts for Weight Loss
This is one of the most basic forms of exercise, but just because it’s basic does not mean that it’s ineffective. If you walk at 3 mph for 60 minutes you can burn approximately 300 calories! You can Lose Weight with the Walk Fast/Slow Plan! Walking is a great place for beginners to start. This form of cardio can be performed just about anywhere (treadmill, around the mall, outside, etc…)
As you build your endurance, you can pick up the pace a bit and begin jogging. This is a great way to burn a few extra calories. If you can maintain a jog at 4-5 mph, you can burn 400-500 calories in 60 minutes. Not too shabby! Pop in those headphones, open up the Top 20 Workout Playlist, and get moving! Maybe it’s time to sign up for a 5k? Check out these Tips for Running Your First 5K.
In order to run, you must first walk and jog! After you’ve mastered the first two, strap on those running shoes and get to work! Running is one of the absolute best options for shedding excess pounds and inches! In 60 minutes, you can burn between 600 and 700 calories if you can maintain a 6-7 mph pace. First, read How to Start Running and then try out our 30-Day Beginners Running Challenge!
4. Stair Climbing
This cardio workout is no joke! Stair climbing will get your heart pumping and weight dropping. You can burn around 600 calories an hour by climbing the stairs. Try the Summer Stairs Challenge, today! If you don’t have access to a flight of stairs, most gyms these days have several stair-climber machines available.
5. Jumping Rope
You’ll feel like a kid on the school playground again. Jumping rope is not only an excellent form of cardio but also a blast! Take the Jump Rope Tabata Challenge. You can jump rope at home, outside, and even in the parking lot on your lunch break! After an hour, you’ll have burned 600 or more calories! With no other equipment needed, there’s no excuse to not get it done!
Row, row, row your boat all the way to the beach! Whether you’re on a rowing machine at the gym or rowing in a boat on the water, you can burn some serious calories with this workout! Rowing consistently will get you in tip-top, bikini shape! You can burn 500-600 calories in 60 minutes of rowing. You can also go kayaking and burn up to 350 calories an hour. Check out these other great ways to burn calories with a little Fitness Fun in the Sun!
Do you have a swimming pool? If not, don’t worry! You can still perform this form of cardio! Head on over to the community pool, gym, lake, or even the ocean. Are you up for the Summer Swim Challenge? Swimming uses almost every muscle in your body. That’s why it’s no surprise that you can burn around 500 calories an hour.
Cycling is a heart-pumping, sweat-inducing, cardio workout that will melt the excess fat right off your body. You can join a cycling class at the local gym or grab your kids and go for a ride around the neighborhood to get this workout in. Find your groove by listening to the Most Popular Workout Playlists on Youtube Right Now. After 60 minutes, you will have burned around 600 calories.
This is a form of cardio that everyone should try at least once in their life! It’s so much fun that you won’t even realize you’re working out! Aside from being an absolute blast, you can burn a whopping 800 calories in an hour long kickboxing class! Are you up for our Kickboxing Challenge?! Give it a try, you may find it’s your new favorite hobby!
10. Performing HIIT
Last, but certainly not least, is HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training. This form of cardio can be performed in a number of ways (treadmill, bodyweight, kettlebell, dumbbell, etc…) At SkinnyMs, this is one of our favorite forms of exercise due to the fact that it’s simple, fast, and effective. An hour long HIIT session can burn up to 1000 calories, making it the most efficient form of cardio out there. Try one of these popular HIIT workouts, today:
- 30-Day HIIT Challenge
- H.I.I.T. Your Arms Workout
- Melt Fat in Minutes with this HIIT Routine
- HIIT Total Body Toning Workout
- 15-Minute Indoor Bodyweight Challenge
Which one of these Top Cardio Workouts for Weight Loss is your favorite? Did we miss one? Let us know in the comment section! You can perform any or all of these forms of cardio to keep your training routine exciting. This will allow you to maintain a healthy lifestyle, long term!