Going every day to the gym can be really difficult in the beginning and also its membership is so costly. Here’s what you can do instead of going to the gym – Cardio workouts.
What is the first thing that comes to your mind as you hear the word ‘cardio workout’? Something that is related to the heart? Well, you are right.
As the name suggests cardio workout or cardiovascular exercise is an activity that increases your heart rate for that moment. It is one of the best ways to lose weight, burn calories, and tone your muscles. Experts recommend that one needs to perform cardio exercises for at least 30 minutes a day to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
As mentioned before, you have to get your heart rate high, but how much? And do you know what should be your maximum heart rate? To calculate your maximum heart rate, you will have to subtract your age from 220. For example, if you are 25, your max heart rate will be (220-25) i.e. 195. So, if you maintain your heart rate to 195, you can consider that workout as a cardio workout.
Now that you are getting your heart rate so high, it should be for something great. There are so many benefits of cardio exercise. It not only makes you strong physically but also mentally.
Benefits of Cardio Workouts
Listed below are a few health benefits of cardio workouts for women:
- Strengthens your heart
- Improves metabolism
- Lowers cholesterol and blood pressure
- Burns calories at a faster rate and helps you lose weight
- Strengthens your muscles and bones
- Reduces stress level
- Low risk of heart attack
- Keeps you relaxed and happy, this preventing depression
- Improves blood circulation
- Boosts immunity
The best part about cardio exercises is that it gives you toned and strong body without the need for fancy equipment or space. They can be done anywhere and anytime. Some commonly known exercises are walking, running, swimming, rope jumping, etc. But there is more to it than these exercises. Scroll down to find out amazing cardio workouts for women.
13 Best Cardio Workouts for Women to Do at Home
If you are new to cardio exercises, you must start with something basic impressed to avoid putting a strain on your muscles. And what is best than walking? Walking for 30 minutes can help you burn nearly 200 calories and also improve your balance and coordination.
Start by walking slowly and move on to brisk walking. If you are looking for a cardio workout then walk with fast speed. The faster you walk, the higher your heart rate. Don’t forget to do a little stretching before starting the workout.
Another great cardio exercise for beginners is biking. You can do it on a stationary bike or a normal bike ride would do. Initially ride slowly and enjoy the ride, later try to increase and decrease the pace according to your comfort. If you have a stationary bike then you can change the resistance according to the intensity of your workout.
It’s time to increase the intensity of your workout by adding running to it. Running improves your overall health. For beginners, you can start jogging in place, and later move on to running outside. For more intense workout find an inclined area and try running up and down.
You can also use stairs for running up and down. It will burn nearly 100 calories in just 10 minutes, which is amazing. Just be careful not to miss out on any step.
4. Rope Jumping
This is a wonderful cardio exercise for both beginners and experts and one of the best exercises to lose weight. You don’t need any special skills for rope jumping. Just a little practice and you are good to go. Start by simply jumping and use your wrists instead of arms for proper jumping. There is no need to jump high as you can fall or trip.
For beginners, 15-30 seconds for rope jumping is enough for one set. Do at least 5-8 such sets. Later you can increase the seconds of jumping to 60 seconds.
There are many variations available in rope jumping like spot jumping, running as you jump, jumping on one leg, alternating your legs, and so on. With this exercise, you can easily burn 50 calories per 5 minutes.
5. Jumping Jacks
Jumping jacks or also known as star jumps is a great total body workout and it works work your glute muscles, hips, arms, shoulders, and finally your heart. And therefore it is in our list of cardio workouts for women.
Jumping jacks have greater health benefits than that of stationary biking. 10 minutes of jumping jacks can burn 90-95 calories.
How to do:
- Stand straight with your arms on either side.
- Now jump and spread your leg as you do it. At the same time lift your arms up over your head.
- Then jump again this time bringing your legs inwards and lowering your arms. This completes one rep.
- Continue doing this for 50 seconds.
Burpees to is a total body workout and help you burn down the overall body fat. It is an excellent cardio exercise and will tone your flabby arms as well as legs. Also, if you want to get rid of inner thigh fat, this is a great exercise. 10 minutes of this exercise can burn 100+ calories. Include burpees in your cardio circuit after every few exercises.
How to do:
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your hands up in the air. Bend down and get into a squat position.
- Now lay your palm in front of you in the ground and jump to push your feet back to get into a plank position.
- Thrust your feet back in to again get into a squat position and stand up.
- To make it a more difficult you can add a push up in the end.
7. Rollback to Stand
This pilates exercise can be a super cardio exercise when changed to ‘Rollback to stand’. This workout works amazing for the abs. For the normal rollback, you sit and lay on the ground and roll back and come back to the sitting position. But for the cardio workout, we’ll have standing as the starting position.
How to do:
- Stand on a mat with feet slightly apart and your arms on your either side.
- Now sit down and roll back pushing your hips and feet towards the ceiling. This has to be done in one fluid motion.
- Then come back or roll back to the sitting position and stand up. There you complete one rep of this exercise.
- Perform 8-10 reps in one set. Do 2-3 sets in your cardio workout cycle.
8. Squat Jumps
As you know squats are a great strength exercise and work amazingly for the lower body by building your leg muscles like hamstring, glutes, and calves. Adding variations to the normal squats can he best exercise for the whole body.
Squat jumps increase your heart rate and are a perfect choice if you want to add some intensity to your workout. But one must be careful while jumping and landing as it can affect your joints.
How to do:
- For the starting position stand with your feet at hip-width apart.
- Get down to the squat position and touch your fingertips to the ground in front of you.
- Now jump up as you get up and swing your arm up over your head and land softly on your feet. This finishes one rep.
- Do this for 30-60 seconds.
Another exercise in the list of cardio workouts for women is skaters. This exercise gives you sexy legs by working on glutes, hamstrings, and calf muscles to tone your legs. It also strengthens your legs and improves your stability.
How to do:
- Begin with feet wide apart and hands locked together.
- Cross your left leg behind the right leg and bend down your knees to get into a crusty position.
- Stand back up as you come to the starting position and hop on to the left leg and push your right leg behind the left leg.
- Again bend your knees and get into crusty position. That completes one rep.
- Continue doing it for 30-60 seconds.
10. Mountain climbers
This exercise works great for both core strength and cardio. Mountain climbers increase flexibility, strength, and improves blood circulation. It works on your legs, arms, and core and burns an amazing amount of fats and also increases metabolism. It is truly a full-body workout.
How to do:
- First of all, get down in push-up position with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width distance and your feet pushed back straight.
- Bring the right knee towards the elbow and push it back again.
- Now bring the left knee towards the elbow and push it back.
- Continue alternating your legs like you are running in a push-up position.
- Perform this for 60 seconds.
HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is a form of exercise where you combine cardio exercises and other strength exercises. These exercises are done in alternating periods until you are very exhausted.
You must perform these exercises for 30-50 seconds continuously without any break. Also, you get a very little recovery time before moving on to the next exercise. You must put your 100% into this workout. This way your body will more calories or fats than the normal exercises.
HIIT exercises can be done anytime at your home as it does not need any special equipment. It consists of various exercises like star jumps, lateral lunges, squat thrust, speed skaters, running, mountain climbers, and so on. For a set, include all these exercises alternatively and give yourself a very short recovery time. Many such sets can be performed together. To last longer in this workout combine high intensity and low-intensity workouts.
Kettlebells are very important for strength training and they are built in a way which is quite easy to carry and handle. They are a great tool for arm exercises and work so much better on muscles than the dumbbells.
A normal 20 minutes workout with this tool can burn up to 400 calories. You can perform lifts, shoulder press, arm exercises, lunges using a kettlebell. It targets your core, lege, arms, glutes, and improves your flexibility, and builds muscle strength.
Beginners must start with a lightweight kettlebell of around 10 to 15 pounds and eventually move on to heavier version.
Some other exercises that you can perform are:
- Russian kettlebell swing
- Kettlebell Squats
- Sit-ups to press
- Kettlebell swing
- Goblet squats
- Sumo deadlifts
- Figure 8
13. Toe taps
Here’s the last exercise on it list of cardio workouts for women. Toe taps are perfect for warmups as well as for cardio workout. They can be done in various ways and can be modified according to your comfort and intensity. Some of the well-known toe taps are standing toe taps, pilates toe taps, toe-tap ups.
Here we’ll discuss standing toe taps in detail. The standing toe taps work on hope, glutes, hamstrings, calves, and core. For this exercise, you can use a box that won’t move easily or do it on the bottom step of the stairs.
How to do:
- Stand in front of the box or stair.
- Place the tip of your right foot on the box while keeping the other foot flat on the ground.
- Now bring this right foot on the ground and at the same time push your left feet off the ground onto the box/stair. This is one rep.
- Repeat the same and increase the speed of your toe taps. You can start fast once you get the hang of it.
- Continue alternating your feet for 40-50 seconds and give yourself a break of 10 seconds before starting again.
I hope you found this article on cardio workouts for women helpful. With these exercises, you can tone up your entire body and lose some excess fat.
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