Lose Every Bulge in 3 Weeks
The Cardio Plan
To blast fat and reach your weight-loss goals, you'll need to do four cardio workouts a week along with the strength routine, says Paul-Brian McReynolds, a martial arts trainer and the cardio specialist at Holistic Fitness.
Two of these should be high-intensity intervals like the routine below. Do them as a run/walk program on a treadmill or outside, or on an elliptical machine. When outside, use your rate of perceived exertion (RPE, or how intense the workout feels on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being easiest and 10 extremely difficult).
For the remaining two days, exercise for 30 to 60 minutes at a relatively steady pace (RPE 5 or 6) with the aerobic workout of your choice. If you're running during your interval workouts, McReynolds suggests cross-training with low-impact activities such as cycling, swimming, or walking the rest of the week to avoid injury. To enhance flexibility, take a yoga class or do a yoga DVD one additional day each week. (We like Rodney Yee's Yoga Burn DVD; $15 at gaiam.com.)
Warm-up: Minutes 0:00–8:00
|Walk at 3.5–4.5 mph||Begin at level 2–3, 100–120 strides per minute||Walk briskly, RPE: 4–5|
|Base pace: Minutes 8:00–9:00||Walk fast or jog at 5.0–6.0 mph||Maintain a steady pace at level 4, 120–140 strides per minute||Power walk or jog, RPE: 6|
Speed interval: Minutes 9:00–10:00
|Increase speed to 7.0–8.0 mph||Increase resistance to level 5, 160–180 strides per minute||Sprint or walk as fast as possible, RPE:|
Intervals:* Minutes 10:00–30:00
|Repeat minutes 8:00–10:00 ten times||Repeat minutes 8:00–10:00 ten times||Repeat minutes 8:00–10:00 ten times|
Cool down: Minutes 30:00–35:00
|Walk at 3.5–4.5 mph||Return to level 2–3, 100–120 strides per minute||Walk briskly, RPE: 4|
*You may have to work up to doing 10 intervals.
RPE: Rate of Perceived Exertion. How hard you’re working on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being the easiest.
Originally published in Fitness magazine, February 2006.
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