Some Of My Favorite Cardio Options

September 19, 2014 by danny · Leave a Comment 

This is the longest I’ve gone between blog posts since starting up  BUT, I’m back!  My summer hours were crazy but with high school and middle schoolers back in school, I *should* have some free time to make more frequent posts.  At least, I’ll try my best!

The treadmill is not my friend.  I have A.D.D. to the 27th power.  After about 14 seconds on that thing I start to get panicky, as if I was locked in a small room… GET ME OUT OF HERE!  Humans are meant to move, and if getting on the treadmill is something you enjoy, more power to you.  Just not for me.

Maybe you’re like me and need to change exercises often to prevent extreme boredom.  If so, below you’ll see some of my favorite cardio/conditioning options.  Start incorporating one, or all, into your cardio program…

-Battling Ropes – Great low-impact exercise.  Even if you have a lower body injury, battling ropes offer a great conditioning tool to work around your injury.

-Heavy Jump Rope – This exercise will get your heart rate up and have your quads burning in no time flat.

-Medicine Ball Jump ‘N Chase – I love this option because it involes deadlifting, jumping, throwing, and sprinting.  That’s a big-bang-for-your-buck exercise!

-Sledgehammer Tire Swings – Tough day at work?  Kids driving you crazy?  This exercise is great for taking your frustrations out!  Unleash your fury!

-Plank-Ups – These are really hard.  Whenever a member of my gym comes in and sees plank-ups on their training program, it’s usually followed by an eye roll.  Hard, but effective!

-Slideboard – Another great low impact option.  A unique benefit we get out of the slideboard is the fact that we move laterally (sideways).  Most exercise options have us going straight forward.  The slideboard helps reduce the chances of overuse injuries since this gets us out of the usual straight forward motion – now we are not performing the same repeative motion over and over and over and over and over again.

-Farmer’s Walks – Another big-bang-for-buck conditioning option.  It works your grip, traps, core, and if you choose a heavy enough weight, will really get your heart rate up!

-Boxing - I don’t coach or compete in Boxing/MMA/UFC, so I’m not real concerned about technique (don’t want it to get ugly though).  I just use the heavy bag to rapidly raise my heart rate, and like the sledgehammer tire swings, get in to beast mode and go to town!  Thrity seconds of all-out effort will make you really tired and definitely give you new found respect for a boxer’s high-level of conditioning!

-Kettlebell Swings – KB Swings are great for working the posterior chain (hamstrings, glutes, low back).  They’re also a great teaching tool for learning the hip hinge.  Excellent exercise!

KB Swing Set Up

-Dumbbell Jump Squats – Another great exercise.  Just make sure that you choose a weight that is fairly light… heavy enough to increase the difficulty level of the jump, but not so heavy that it has you slamming down to the ground greatly increasing joint stress.  Depending on your strength level, body control, and the amount of reps you are performing, anywhere between 5-25 pounds would probably be a good choice.

-Jump Rope – The simple jump rope was a great choice when TVs were in black and white, is a great option today, and will be an excellent choice in 2054.  My powers only go so far… I only have 40-years of future-predicting-ability left in me.  But my guess is that our grandkids grandkids will still be using the jump rope.

-Complex – Complexes can have you laying on the floor gasping for air minutes after completion.  There are 456,256 different options to chose from.  In the example you see above, I’m performing deadlifts, followed by hang cleans, followed by push presses, and finish will back squats.

-Conditioning With A Ball - You knew that I had to include a conditioning option that involved basketball.  Any time a sport is played or a ball is involved in a conditioning drill, I’m in!  It could be the shooting drill you see in the video, or running pass routes in the backyard with your kids.  You get in better shape while having fun.  Win-win!

If you dread the idea of performing the same old, same old, hopefully some of these options get you motivated to hit the gym and have some fun doing it!

Did I leave out your favorite(s)?  If so, let me know your favorite options…

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