Why home cardio workouts? Because of the nature of the activity, they just work better for fat burning, as well as improving cardiac and muscular health.
If I had a dollar for every time a new client came to me for fat loss advice and told me all they were doing to lose fat was walking around their neighborhood while gabbing with their friend I would be a rich woman.
You might lose a little fat walking around the hood but you will quickly plateau if you don’t shake things up a bit.
Research confirms that adding high intensity interval training to your fat loss exercise regime will significantly increase your fat burning success.
So much so that women in a recent study who never changed their diet STILL lost more fat doing the intervals then women doing only long slow cardio such as walking and cleaning up their diets.
Here is a list of home cardio workouts you can do anytime right at home that will ignite your fat burning engine:
Home cardio workouts #1: Stair exercises
You can run the stairs using either the stairs at your house or perhaps a set in your neighborhood or local park. Just alternate jogging or running up the stairs with a short break when you get to the top. Make sure to be careful and walk on the way back down.
Home cardio workouts #2: Burpees
If you know me, you know this is one of my favorite home cardio workouts to do. It can be pretty tough and some days I take pride in that. The best thing about burpees is that not only are they a total body exercise but you can modify them to meet your current fitness level. Burpee progressions include: squat thrust –> burpee –>burpee with jump –>burpee with push up –> burpee with push up and jump–>burpee with push up, jump, and chin up –> burpee with push up, jump, chin up, and knee lift.
A close runner up to burpees as one of my favorite home cardio workouts! Swing the kettlebell for 24 seconds and then rest for 36. Repeat for 15 minutes.
Home cardio workouts #4: Swim sprints
Got a pool out back? Great! Hop in and do some swim sprints. Sprint to the other side of the pool and then recover for 30 seconds. Repeat for 10 minutes.
Home cardio workouts #5: Bodyweight cardio
Did you know you could get a great cardio workout at home just by using your own bodyweight? Simply do one or more of the following exercises for 30 seconds and then rest for 30 before repeating for 10-15 minutes.
Bodyweight squats, mountain climbers, jumping jacks, planks, mountain jumpers, inverted rows.
Home cardio workouts #6: Jump rope
Go old school and feel like a kid again. Try jumping for 60 seconds and then resting for 30 seconds. Repeat for 15 minutes.
Home cardio workouts #7: Battling ropes
This one might be new to you but is super effective. Get your hands on some heavy rope (i.e. 1.5 inches thick, 40 feet long) and wrap around a tree. With an end in each hand simply make waves with the rope for 10 second intervals followed by 20 seconds rest. Repeat for 10 minutes.
Home cardio workouts #8: Vertical jumps
Yup, just squat down and jump up in place as high as you can. Repeat until you jump 50 times but feel free to take breaks as needed.
Home cardio workouts #9: Hill sprints
Obviously you would need a hilly yard or a nice hill in a local park to tackle this one. Simply run up the hill and walk back down. Repeat for 10 minutes.
Home cardio workouts #10: Shuttle sprints
Set up 3 markers in your yard about 10 yards away from each other. Start at the middle marker, sprint to the marker on your right and touch the ground. Then sprint all the way to the marker that was on your left and touch the ground. Then sprint back to the middle to finish. Try doing 5 shuttle sprints to start and adding one more each time you try them.
Home cardio workouts #11: Play
Maybe one of the best home cardio workouts of all time? Get out and play! Get a soccer game going or a game of ultimate frisbee or basketball. Or simply run around playing with the kids!
Home cardio workouts #12: Metabolic resistance training
Metabolic resistance training is basically cardio with weights. For example, doing a barbell squat with enough weight on it to elicit a cardio vascular response while doing it. Should be a challenging enough weight so make sure you do this safely in your home gym with a spotter.
Home cardio workouts #13: Intervals on treadmill, bike, rower, or elliptical trainer
Boring, but works. Stay away from the long, boring cardio that doesn’t challenge you and stick with intervals. Try 24 on and 36 off or go crazy and do 2 mins on and 2 mins recovery. Shoot for 20 mins.
Home cardio workouts #14: Walk Run the dog
Take the dog out for his daily run. He can do intervals too, you know!
Home cardio workouts #15: Rebounding
I do a lot of rebounding for my home cardio workouts because I still fight an old running injury from 2004 and the rebounding seems to work for me. Good rebounding workouts for you to try will come with a quality unit.
Home cardio workouts #16: Intervals on your bike
Take out the bike and hit the hood. Increase the resistance and pedal fast for 30 seconds and then coast and recover for 30 -60 seconds. Enjoy your time outside.
Home cardio workouts #17: A good follow along DVD
While it’s rarely exciting there are some decent home cardio workouts follow along DVDs available. Grab one and find a favorite for a rainy day.
So, there you have it – 17 ideas for home cardio workouts. Enjoy, and train safe!
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Your friend & Coach,
Susan Campbell, MS, CSCS