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Workout Wednesday: The 10-Minute Cardio Workout

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One of the biggest excuses people give for not exercising is “I just don’t have time.” I can definitely understand that because it used to be my excuse, too. With kids, families, social commitments, and our uncanny knack for being workaholics, it’s true–sometimes there isn’t any extra time to devote to the gym.

Know what, though? You don’t have to devote time to the gym. Know why? Because you can do a workout right at home. And here’s the best part–it doesn’t have to take an hour! It doesn’t even have to take a half hour.

What would you say if I told you a 10-minute workout is possible and that it can help improve your cardiovascular health? Pretty unbelievable, right?

It is possible, and a 10-minute workout is exactly what this week’s workout is. But I’ll get to that shortly.

America’s Exercise Problem

The statistics on exercise are frightening. Did you know that 60% of Americans don’t get the daily recommended amount of physical activity? And that 25% of adults aren’t active at all?

While so many of us are upset about our weight, few of us do anything about it. Only 30 minutes of moderate physical activity every day is all it takes to help you maintain a healthy body weight. Only 30 minutes. So, what are you waiting for?

Hate exercising? Make it fun. Play a game like Wii Fit Plus. Give ExerciseTV a try. Check out one of the many exercise apps available on your smartphone’s app store. There are a ton of ways to make exercising fun, interesting, and, ultimately, rewarding.

Not sure where to start? Easy. Try different workouts. When you switch what you’re doing, you’re more likely to stick with exercise in general. There’s also the option of working with a trainer.

The bottom line is, you’re not going to see any changes in your body unless you’re committed to a regular exercise routine. You have plenty of options. Find one you love and stick with it, whether it’s swimming, running, or a mix of different things. You’ll see the results with commitment–even if you can only squeeze in 10 minutes here and there during the day.

This Week’s Workout

Remember when I mentioned that it’s really possible to get a great workout in just 10 minutes? Good.

This week’s workout is a cardio routine. It only takes 10 minutes, but is higher up on the chain in intensity, making it a great option for improving your overall cardiovascular health. (If you’re a big fan of cardio workouts, check out the cardio kickboxing post from a few weeks back.)

This routine can be done in the comfort of your own home (or even at the office) and requires no equipment. All you need is the will to work out and a desire for better health. It can be done on your lunch break, or while the kids are napping. In a bit of a time-crunch? It can still be done. Take a look below to see how simple it can be. Remember to stretch before you get down to it!

10-minute-cardio

The Moves

1.) Rocket Jumps (2 sets of 15 to 24 reps)

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend slightly at the waist and place your hands on your thighs palms down. Jump up and push your hands straight up, extending your whole body upward.

2.) Star Jumps (2 sets of 15 to 24 reps)

Stand with your hands at your sides and your knees bent slightly. Jump up, extending your legs and arms out to the side and into a star shape as you jump. Land with your knees together and hands by your sides. Try to keep your back straight and abs tight while you jump.

2.1) Squats (An alternative to the Star Jumps)

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and extend your arms out in front of you. Bend your knees and lower yourself until your knees are almost at 90 degrees. Be sure to keep your back straight and keep your knees in line with your toes.

3.) Tap Backs (2 sets of 15 to 24 reps)

Start with your right leg stepped back. Swing your arms forward, then repeat with your left leg back. Flow in a continuous movement and keep your hips and shoulders facing forward. Make sure your knee stays in line with your toes.

4.) Burpees (2 sets of 15 to 24)

Stand up straight. Drop into a squat and place your hands flat on the ground, then kick your feet back so you’re in a push-up position. Jump your feet back into a squat position and jump straight up with your arms extended up over your head.

Cool-Down & Recovery

A proper cool-down technique helps reduce the strain on your heart as it works to move from exertion back to a normal rate. Cool-downs also release endorphins, not only making you “feel good,” but also helping your muscles feel better as well.

This week, take a 15-minute walk. If you can, and if the weather permits, take it outside. There’s nothing better than connecting with nature as you help your body recover from your workout.

Even with a 10-minute workout, your body’s recovery matters. A few of my favorite recovery supplements are listed below:

What are your thoughts on at-home workouts? We’d love to hear from you! Leave a comment below and let us know how this week’s workout helped you.

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