Improve your endurance: Exercises to keep your heart rate up and the pounds down

If you are looking for ways to improve your endurance, or have finally realized that you need to shed some pounds, consider looking into a stabilized cardio workout that will strengthen not only your heart, but will burn fat. According to LiveStrong.com, heart rate measurements provide feedback on how hard you’re working so that you can meet your fitness goals, such as burning fat or endurance training.

You want to make sure you keep track of measuring your heart rate, as it will ensure that you are meeting your workout goals. If you say that your goal is to lose some pounds, then you want your suggested heart rate to be different than what it would be from training for a marathon.

For example, if you jog on a treadmill at level 5, your fitness will progress. If you continue to run at level 5, you will begin to burn less fat because you won’t be working as hard to lose weight. This is why it is important to pay attention to your heart rate so you know when to add more intensity and meet your goals.

In order to kill two birds with one stone, below are some simple exercises that the majority do not require going to the gym and will bump your heart rate up while eliminating the pounds. Some exercises suggest a repetition goal for you, but challenge yourself and do as many reps as you can.

Stair Climb. The stair machine will become your best friend. Think of it as the gateway to cardio heaven. It’s a great way to get your heart rate up and break a sweat.

Push-up Burpee. You will have a love-hate relationship with this exercise. This is just like a regular burpee, but a little more advanced. Begin in a low squat position with your palms facing the floor. Then, kick your feet back to a push-up position, which sets you up to do the actual push-up before coming back up to the squat.

Lunge jump. This is just how you imagine it. Start out doing a regular lunge, standing with your feet together and lunge the right food forward, bending the knee so it’s 90 degrees. Then this is where the fun begins. Jump up immediately, extending the legs fully and coming back down on the next foot forward. Aim for 10-15 reps.

Jumping jack planks. Planks can get boring, so let’s spice them up with a little movement. Start with a traditional plank, but keep the feet together. Simply put all your pressure on your hands while flexing your core and do a jumping jack with your legs by moving them out to the side, then back together. Aim for 12-15 reps (out and in counts as one).

Bicycle. No, not the one with wheels. This exercise models the movement of riding a bicycle simply by lying on your back and with your knees in your chest and hands behind your head. Bring your left elbow towards the right knee, while your legs extend out. Try for 30 reps.

As a Healthy Blue Xtras member, you can receive a discounted membership at American Home Fitness, Detroit Kung Fu Academy, Endurance Fitness Centers, Fitness 19, Fitness USA, LA Fitness and LUV All Tennis clubs of Michigan.

Photo credit: Lululemon Athletica

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