Fit 5: When You Want to Focus on Cardio

Whether you’re looking to tone up or brush up on your mile time, cardiovascular training is key. Cardio can be accomplished in more ways than just hitting the road to run, so fear not! The following types of classes offer a different ways to get your heart pumping. You can expect to start to see results with two to three cardio-based classes per week, so add a few of these in place of your usual go-to choices in your fitness regimen.

Class type: Circuit training

Why: If you want to incorporate a strength aspect into your cardio (AKA if you’re not a runner or spin lover), take a class that focuses on plyometrics and agility circuits.

Studio Recommendations:

9Round (Baltimore)
Apparatus (Melbourne)
CityFit Studio (St. Louis)

Class Type: Treadmill interval training

Why: If you’re looking to improve your mile time, aim to get in two classes a week of interval training a week. Speed work will have you dropping your race pace in no time, as opposed to those solo long runs in your training program.

Studio Recommendations:

Tread Fitness (Dallas)
Brickhouse Cardio Club (Columbus)
Thoroughbred Treadmill Studio – Mill Valley (San Francisco Metro)

Class type: Rowing

Why: Rowing is a great alternative to running or spin classes, as it focuses on using your posterior side muscles. If you’re looking to up your cardio past three to four classes a week, add a row class in to make sure your body is getting balance.

Studio Recommendations:

Row Studios (Houston)
GO Row (Chicago)
Row House – UES (New York)

Class type: Cardio kickboxing

Why: If you’re looking for a full-body workout that’s not focused on weight training, try a kickboxing class. You’ll get your heart pumping and calories burning in a high-energy and fun environment.

Studio Recommendations:

All About Kickboxing (Los Angeles)
Fight Firm (Philadelphia)
Urban Fitness – Burnaby (Vancouver Metro)

Class type: Swimming/water-based aerobic classes

Why: Swimming or taking a circuit class in a pool allows you to take the stress of gravity off your joints, making it a great cross training that still allows you to get in a round of cardio. Plus, it’s a full-body workout, so you’ll hit every muscle group leaving you feeling accomplished and balanced.

Studio Recommendations:

AQUA Studio (New York)
SwimWOD (Washington, D.C.)

Mandy Gragg is a San Francisco-based personal trainer/instructor, and a fitness fashion & beauty blogger. Connect with her via her blog at The Haute Sweat or via Instagram/Twitter @TheHauteSweat

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