Start easy

Get consistent with cardiovascular training!

Cardiovascular training does not mean just running. From the use of various cardio machines to circuit training, every session that pushes your heart rate above a certain threshold can be considered as cardiovascular training.

Regardless of your choice of training right now consistency is the key, not the load. If you prefer running, start with shorter slower jogs and focus on establishing a consistent weekly pattern of 3-5 sessions a week. Short consistent sessions will boost your motivation, train your body to burn fat at rest and will contribute to the overall calorie expenditure. As little as 15 minutes a day will be sufficient when combined with strength training and healthy, clean nutrition.

Cardiovascular training may include any of the following: running, swimming, crosstrainer, stationary bike and the dreaded rowing machine. Even brisk walking is cardiovascular training and should be the least you are able to do. Circuit training is a form of cardiovascular training due to the high demands on the heart to supply oxygen to muscles. Mix it up if running is hard on on your body.

If you are a beginner and are worried that this is simply impossible try this from tomorrow:

E.g. 15 minute run*:
5 minutes slow jog
5 minutes interval training = 1 minute faster run followed by 1 minute slow recovery jog.
5 minutes cool down jog.
*Same principle can apply to other cardio work.

Super easy if you stick to the following:

a. Pace yourself – if you have burned out before 15 minutes is up you have started too fast.
b. Take time warming into the run – however fast or far you are planning to run spend the first 5 minutes jogging slowly. This will gradually warm up your muscles and prime your joints for the training.
c. Listen to your body – if your body is tired from the last few days of running forget about it and go for a longer, relaxing walk. The last thing you want to do is to stress your body by overdoing something that is meant to make you fit and healthy!

Once the above becomes easy, increase the length of your interval training periods. E.g 5 minutes warm up, 10 minutes interval training, 5 minutes cool down. Do not let the body stagnate,challenge it with additional load when your are physically and mentally ready.

As the year progresses your fitness levels will continue to improve and you will naturally start running faster and for longer periods. By the time this month is up you will no longer find it hard to run and it will become an enjoyable part of your everyday life.

Short and consistent runs are best

Important: unless you are training for a marathon/triathlon etc there is absolutely no need to run for more than 20 – 30 minutes, 4-5 times a week. Running for an hour a day to lose weight is not only unhealthy, but also is also counterproductive.

The new fitness mentality coupled with increased levels of fitness will motivate you to stay on top of your game for the duration of the month.

With healthy wishes,

Dmitri Tkatchev

Read on:

Introduction to the 31 Day Fitness Kickstart

Day 1 – Water

Day 2 – Protein at breakfast

Day 3 – Meal frequency

Day 4 – Sugar

Day 5 – Lifestyle

Day 6 – Carbohydrates

Day 7 – Sleep

Day 9 – Get clever with your fats!

Day 10 – Find or become a role model

Day 11 – Coffee

Day 12 – Exercise improves your appetite response.

Day 13 – Consistency over intensity

Day 14 – Add cinnamon to your diet

Day 15 – Energising morning fix

Day 16 – Active rest

Day 17 – Holistic fitness.

Day 18 – Minimise muscle loss.

Day 19 – Don’t forget steady paced cardio

Day 20 – Eat plenty of fibre

Day 21 – Take up a physically demanding hobby.

Day 22 – Hire a qualified and an experienced Personal Trainer

Day 23 – Eat Cake

Day 24 – Don’t forget that the feeling of hunger is the best cue for when to eat

Day 25 – Tune in to your training

Day 26 –  Sort out the calorie density of your meals.

Day 27 – Eat more grapefruit

Day 28 – Eat within an hour after your workout!

Day 29 – Stay in the low range of Glycaemic Index and Glycaemic Load

Day 30 – Cycle crunches.

Day 31 – Learn to listen to your body