Thursday, May 10, 2012

Guest Post: The Basic Cardio Equipment You Need

The Basic Cardio Equipment You Need
Staying healthy is a huge concern for Americans. After all, doctors have concluded heart disease is the top killer among the American people today. This is mostly because Americans fail to exercise enough and are consuming too much (unhealthy) food. However, there is hope for a healthy heart. There simply needs to be goals and priorities. Let's get started!

Eat for Health
A proper diet is a great start to getting your heart in shape. You need to consume foods that have vitamins that are helpful in keeping arteries free of clogs. Believe it or not, dark chocolate (in small, daily quantities) is a beneficial part of a diet. Also, remember to drink plenty of water (normally, there isn’t a limit to how much you should drink, so fill ‘er up!). 

Flex that Muscle
Yes your heart is a muscle. It needs to be exercised to stay healthy. A basic cardiovascular workout regimen needs to be at least 20 minutes a day, three times a week. Exercise helps boost your energy level AND keep your cholesterol down. Speaking of exercise, let’s look at some specific exercises to start us down the road to a healthy heart.

Starting with Basics
An easy and simple exercise to start out with is jogging or walking. This is especially great when you have someone you can chat with while exercising. If you do not have a walking partner, use an I-pod to keep you company. Walking on trails provides great scenery and different levels of difficulty. 

Sit Ups 

Sit ups are a very popular exercise and they do not require any equipment. They also do not require any special training. They allow you to easily work on your abs while strengthening your heart. A basic sit up is when you sit on the floor with your knees bent at a 90 degree angle. Place your hands behind your head, then lay completely flat on your back. You raise your torso up with your stomach muscles. You can let your chest touch your knees, then lay back onto the floor. Repeat this motion. For another variation, touch your right elbow to your left knee and visa-versa, as you go up and down. 

Kick Butt!
Kickboxing requires minimal equipment. You can learn how to side kick, jab, cross and round kick. The basic equipment is loose pants, a sleeveless or short sleeved shirt, and good cross-training shoes. If you are looking for more intense training, you may need to add a helmet and protective padding.

Bike-riding is another great basic cardiovascular exercise. It’s very easy to purchase a stationary stand that you can use indoors during inclimate weather. Always wear proper head gear indoors and outdoors, too. When on the road, make sure you wear reflective gear, so you can be seen. 

Dumb bells are a very effective way to gain strength, build muscle and get a good cardio workout. They are easy to use and inexpensive. You should always start with light weights. As you gain strength and become more proficient, you can increase the weights you use. 

Ginnifer Hallows writes about saving money, wellness & saving money at

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