Cardio fitness, or “cardiovascular training,” is essential to your overall health. We all know this, but if you’re dragging yourself into the gym to run 30 minutes on a treadmill, hating it the whole time, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
The most beneficial workout programs encourage, entice, and motivate you. At the Hospital for Special Surgery Tisch Performance Center, we work with our clients to create a complete healthy lifestyle plan that’s challenging, fun, and most importantly, effective.
Why Cardio Fitness Matters
Cardio fitness has a lot of wide-ranging benefits, including:
1. Everyone’s favorite: metabolism boosting and weight management
2. Improved performance in sports, work, and life
3. A reduction in cardiovascular risk factors such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels
4. Less mental anxiety
5. An increased lactate threshold. Your lactate threshold is the point during exercise where your blood lactate levels begin to rise rapidly, leading to fatigue. When your lactate threshold increases, you’re able to perform at higher levels of intensity for longer periods of time. Marathon, anyone?
Get Off the Hamster Wheel!
Let me just say that any form of cardiovascular fitness is fantastic. When you’re moving, you’re becoming healthier and more active. However, if you’re looking to get the best bang for your buck (and time), then follow our method of energy systems training.
Steady state cardio, most commonly known as the “hamster on the wheel” approach, has been shown to be less effective for fat burning. Interval training and “zone specific” approach training, has been seen throughout programs to be the most effective in the common goals listed above, with the most important being metabolism boosting effects.
How We Help Our Clients Get Results
We love seeing the results that our hard-working clients get. You may already know that the HSS Tisch Performance Center has partnered with Athletes Performance to use the cutting-edge Core Performance (CPro) training system to provide clients with a personalized program.
The CPro protocol for interval training is based off of two things:
1. Your rate of perceived exertion (how tired you get as you exercise at increasingly intense levels)
2. Your heart rate.
With these data points, we’re able to design programs that push you past what’s known as the aerobic threshold, where your body is using carbohydrates and fats to produce energy, and into the anaerobic system, where your body is burning those carbohydrates up, and then back again. This is all done with the goal of improving your performance.
Switching from these systems during training can be done with many exercises. Whether you are running outside, doing jumping jacks, biking, or burpees, these heart rates and zones can be achieved. The great thing about cardiovascular training is that it can be done anywhere at any time – no machine except your own BODY required!
Kara Federowicz is a Certified personal trainer at the Tisch Performance Center at Hospital for Special Surgery. Kara has a degree from PennState in kinesiology, the scientific study of human movement.