I get asked this question all the time, is cardio the best way to burn calories and fat? Sparing my political correctness for another time, I must tell you that if you have asked this question, your intentions are good, but misguided. Many people for some reason have this belief that running yourself into a sweaty mush on the treadmill is the best way to get a good workout and burn fat and calories. While it is true that getting a good run, row, bike, etc. in, is a great way to improve health, it is not the only way to achieve those things, nor is it the best way.
The way I see it, there are two very important indicators for success in relation to human fitness: 1) variety of movement and, 2) workout dynamism. There is nothing more boring than just sitting or standing in the same spot at a gym for 30-40 minutes (i.e. on a piece of cardio equipment). I mean, not everyone likes Orange Theory, okay?! Read more here.
3 minutes of light jogging, biking, rowing or jump rope
Set up a timer. You will complete five 1:30 work intervals followed by 0:45 seconds of rest (2:1 work to rest ratio). This will be very metabolically taxing, but is approximately 11 minutes in total, so short and sweet! Complete the Double Unders (if you don't have these, do 60 Doubles) and the Burpees as quickly as possible. Then get as many Thursters as you can with the remainder of the 1:30. Rest 0:45, and start round two. Keep track of the # of Thrusters you get each round and total them for your final score.
5 Rounds [1:30 work, 0:45 rest]
20 Double Unders (or) 60 Doubles
with the remainder of the time complete as many Thrusters @ 75lb./115lb. as possible.
Total Thrusters for 5 Rounds: ________
The Method Behind the Madness
Now, you tell me. Do you feel more physically taxed having done 11 minutes of work than you would having done 30 minutes of steady state (continuous movement at one intensity) exercise? Our bodies and minds love the constant variation that comes with doing multiple movements. This will allow you to not only keep the physiological intensity high, but the psychological intensity as well!
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What is wod?
WOD stands for Workout of the Day
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