Some people prefer to stay in the weight room to work out, yet, others prefer cardio events like running, biking, or swimming in the great outdoors. Both approaches are great ways to get exercise, but you may be bored with “just going for a run.” Here is a fun compromise where you can focus on often neglected training exercises that work the full core (lower back, abdominal, obliques, hips, and upper back). Core work is not just working on your abs.
If you are dreading on doing your cardio day OR only do cardio and nothing else, add in this circuit for 10 minutes before and after your cardio event of the day. You could also use this “warmup” prior to weight room workouts as well.
Core / Cardio
Dynamic movements prior to exercise has become the gold standard of the warm up over the years. Major joint movements will help reduce stiffness prior to a run or heavy lifting workout. Dynamic stretching works by flexing one group of muscles to stretch the opposite group of muscles. Exercises like the butt-kickers, Frankenstein walks, Leg Swings, or Bounding all flex and stretch the front and back side of the leg while working movements in the knee, hip, and ankle joints. Learning several of these movements will be beneficial to how you feel during your cardio event - especially running. Check out this excellent dynamic warm up routine.
Core Work Plank pose 30 seconds Swimmers – 30 seconds Hip Rollers – 10 (5 each side) Donkey Kicks 10/leg Dirty Dogs 10/leg Bear Crawl – 25 yards Arm haulers – 10-20 Reverse pushups – 10-20 Birds – 10-20 Side Plank pose 1 min (each side 30 seconds) Side bends – 10/side Crunches – 10 Reverse crunches – 10 Left crunches – 10 Right crunches – 10
Follow with a Light Leg Stretch and go do your thing! The added core focus will make a difference with your cardio workout days especially if these are something you typically neglect.