Cardio - What "Type" is Best for You? - Podcast

Cardiovascular Conditioning - Aerobic vs. Anaerobic - What's Best?

Improving cardiovascular fitness is a central objective of Outdoor Fitness. You’ll keep busy with everything from fast-paced walks in the park to loops along a rural path, from hill sprints to drills on an athletic field. Progress in cardiovascular conditioning is easy to spot.

Maybe you’re starting out on your fitness program as a walker—in a few weeks, you’ll need to jog to break a sweat. Maybe you’re already a runner—as you progress, you'll need to get ready for your pace to increase, and your body to feel like it was born to run! Whatever your starting fitness level, cardiovascular fitness will be one of the key measurements of your progress.

Cardio Tools
Rate of Perceived Exertion, or RPE, is the most important measuring tool you’ll use day-to-day in your outdoor workouts. This is a subjective, self-determined measurement of your muscular, cardiovascular and psychological fatigue. RPE accurately measures your heart rate—and your exertion level—by asking you to assess your own fatigue in the moment. Monitoring and controlling your RPE helps you make the most of your workout time—by managing your exertion, you burn fat and calories, and build muscle, more efficiently. Many times throughout your workouts, you should prompt yourself to gauge your RPE. There is no wrong answer—whatever you feel in that moment is the right response.  Using the descriptions on the RPE Chart, to check in with yourself during a workout.  If you can carry on a conversation with ease, then you’re probably not working hard enough.  If you can carry on a conversation but you find yourself not really wanting to, then you are beginning to maximize your workout.

Aerobic vs. Anaerobic Conditioning

There are two cardio training zones you’ll need to know about to manage your workouts for maximum benefit.

Aerobic conditioning takes place when your body is working with oxygen. This type of training makes up the bulk of your cardiovascular work. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 30 minutes of aerobic conditioning on most days, meaning 5 or more days per week. Aerobic conditioning improves your body’s ability to transport oxygen and to clear carbon dioxide, and it improves endurance.

Anaerobic conditioning takes place when your body is working without oxygen, because of the intensity of your exertion. Anaerobic conditioning builds muscular power, strength and speed. Anaerobic conditioning is an important part of your routine. You might include anaerobic conditioning to your workouts 1-2 times per week, for general conditioning, and to up to 2-3 times per week, for high performance athletes. Also, see Interval Workouts below.

Bottom Line: Both aerobic and anaerobic conditioning methods are important for good health and fitness. The key is to take it slowly in the beginning of your program and build it into your fitness routine.


Podcast - For good health and fitness, hop onboard the Cardio Train




 Anaerobic Workout Ideas

1. Top 5 Ways to Boost Your Cardio

2. The High Intensity Fat Blaster

3. Amp it up with Steps and Stairs

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