Best Cardio Workout For Weight Loss Beginners
I know that sometimes it’s hard to motivate yourself to go to the gym. It can be expensive, and it takes a lot of time. But you don’t need to spend hours at a gym to get results! With these simple cardio workouts, you’ll be able to fit in fitness whenever you have time—even if it’s just 10 minutes a day.
These exercises are low-impact, which means they won’t put too much stress on your joints or muscles. They’re also easy for beginners, but not so easy that they won’t challenge more experienced athletes. And best of all? All of these exercises can be done without any equipment!
So whether you’re looking for something that can fit into your morning routine or just want something new for when you’re bored with your usual routine, these workouts will give you the results you want without taking up too much time or money!
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Best Cardio Workout For Weight Loss Beginners
Cardio exercises can have many beneficial effects on a person’s body. A 2015 study found that people who completed a 4-week cardio exercise program had:
- an increased sense of well-being
- a decrease in psychological distress
- a decrease in perceived stress
- less emotional exhaustion
Cardio exercises may also be helpful for people who would like to lose weight. Researchers found that female participants who attended a Zumba class for 8 weeks had statistically significant effects in:
- body fat mass reduction
- body weight loss improvement
- body mass index improvement
- fat percentage reduction
Top home cardio exercises
There are many cardio exercises a person can do to reach or maintain a moderate body weight or improve their health. Before any exercise, a person should take time to warm up their muscles to reduce the risk of injury.
All recommended exercises in this section are guidelines only. A person wanting to start any new exercise should do so gently and at their own pace.
Once a person becomes familiar with a form of cardio exercise, they can try to increase the intensity, volume, duration, resistance, or technique to make the exercise more challenging.
Jump rope is an effective form of cardio exercise. Jumping rope strengthens calf muscles and improves the elasticity of surrounding tendons and connective tissue. Jump rope also uses the arm muscles, as well as the muscles of the abdomen.
- Lightly grip the handles of the jump rope.
- Relax the shoulders and keep the elbows close to the torso.
- Gently bend the knees.
- Rotate the rope from the wrist and keep a smooth arc as the rope passes overhead.
- Jump low to reduce impact on the knees and ankles.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommend 15 minutes of jump rope exercises as part of a person’s daily moderate intensity exercise.
Jumping jacks involve the entire body and are a good way to work the heart, lungs, and muscles in one exercise.
- Standing straight, spread the arms to the sides and the legs wide apart.
- Jump, returning the arms to the sides of the body, and the legs to the midline.
- Jump again, extending the arms and legs out.
Burpees are an intense exercise, as they use the arms, legs, and core.
- Stand upright.
- Squat, placing the hands on the ground.
- Jump the legs back so they are straight.
- Jump the legs to return into the squat position.
- Stand up.
- Jump in place.
Running in place
When running in place, a person moves their body as if they were running, but they stay in one spot.
A 2015 study found that running in place can reduce muscle fatigue, improve aerobic exercise ability, and strengthen muscles. Researchers also note that it improved flexibility, gait, and lumbar stability.
Running in place can be part of an interval workout. This is where a person completes repetitions of different exercises in a set time. An example of an interval workout that includes running in place is the following:
- Run in place for 2 minutes.
- Increase speed for 1 minute.
- Rest for 1 minute.
- Jog in place for 3 minutes.
- Rest for 1 minute.
Squat jumps involve the same movements as a regular squat, with the addition of a jump. Squat jumps target the buttocks, thighs, and hamstrings. Squats also help increase flexibility of the knee, hip, and ankle joints.
- Stand with the feet apart and the arms along the sides of the body.
- Squat until the knees are at a 90-degree angle, swinging the arms back.
- Swing arms forward and jump.
- Land and repeat.
High intensity interval training (HIIT)
HIIT is a series of workouts that involve short high intensity bursts, broken up by lower intensity recovery periods. HIIT training uses the body’s energy reserves, increasing metabolism and calories burned.
According to the American Council on Exercise, a person should do 1 minute of high intensity exercise for every 2 or 3 minutes of recovery. At home, a person may choose to do intense exercises, such as sprinting or burpees, followed by gentle jogging on the spot.
Top gym cardio exercises
If a person chooses to do cardio workouts at the gym, they can consider the following exercises:
The elliptical machine can provide the cardio benefits of walking or running, with reduced impact on a person’s joints. Elliptical machines are beneficial to those with joint issues, such as arthritis.
The stair climber strengthens the lower body. A person using a stair climber should make sure they maintain good posture throughout the exercise.
It can take a while to build stamina with a stair climber, and so a person should take their time and focus on increasing the duration of the sets.
The exercise bike is useful for people who have joint issues, as it places less stress on the joints than other cardio machines. The exercise bike works the leg muscles, and a person can choose their pace.
A person using a treadmill is essentially running but with less impact on their joints. The treadmill is also easily adjustable for each individual’s needs.
A person using a treadmill should start at a pace that suits their fitness level.
The rowing machine offers a total body workout. Additionally, it has the benefit of being impact free, and it does not involve bearing weight.
- Sit in the seat and strap the feet to the platform.
- Bend the legs and pull the knees in.
- Keep the arms straight and grip the oars.
- Push against the platform with the feet while moving the body up and the arms back.
- Fully extend the legs, then pull the arms back and bend the knees.
Swimming has many health benefits. According to Australia’s Department of Health and Human Services, swimming:
- increases heart rate but reduces impact stress on the body
- builds endurance, muscle strength, and heart fitness
- helps maintain healthful weight
- keeps the heart and lungs healthy
A cardio exercise in a swimming pool can involve completing lengths. A person should build their swimming strength at a pace that suits their needs.
Tips on getting the most out of cardio
A person who wants to get the most benefit out of cardio exercise can try the following:
- making sure they warm up before and cool down after every workout session
- giving their body time to recover between workouts
- eating a healthful, balanced diet
- creating a weekly exercise routine
- setting realistic goals
- starting slowly, and gradually building up strength and stamina
There are many cardio exercises available for a person who would like to reach or maintain a moderate weight or become healthier.
A person should be aware of their limits and make sure not to push themselves too far. If a person has any concerns with regard to their exercise routine, they should speak with a doctor.
It is important to note that being healthy and reaching or maintaining a moderate weight requires a combination of a balanced diet and exercise.
Workout For Beginners
At some point, everyone is a beginner at any given talent or skill. When it comes to exercise, it is no different. For beginners, though some people may have a fuzzy memory of playing sports as a child, getting into (or back into) working out may seem overwhelming.
No matter which category you identify with most, starting into a physical fitness program and feeling like a beginner can seem like a scary and daunting task. With that in mind, we made this video specifically for those who have no formal training or experience following an exercise routine as a way to ease into working out. We have chosen exercises that can be modified to be easy, but can also be modified to be difficult so even if you are starting with very little strength, this routine can work for you and if you are starting from having some strength but just a bit out of shape then this routine can also fit your needs as well.
For example, if you know you are particularly weak in your legs then you can limit the distance you move with each exercise motion to make that particular exercise easier to complete. Where if you know you have strong legs then you can attempt a more full range of motion as long as you can comfortably control your body through that full range. Everyone is different so everyone will need to start at a different level of difficulty and the only way you can decide what is right for you is by trying it and listening to your body.
In this video we go through two set of 10 repetitions, meaning we will do 10 motions of each exercise, pause for a small rest then complete another 10. Now, though that is what we use in the video you do have to or need to start there. In fact it would be better to start with just a few repetitions (4-6) and only do one set until you know how your body will react to the entire routine. If you are not sore or in discomfort the next day then by all means add more repetitions or sets until you do start to feel a small amount of soreness the next day. Once you hit that point try to focus on improving your form by completing a more full range of motion every time you do this video again. And once you can do this exercise with perfect form and full range, then you can add additional weight to make each exercise harder.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give to beginners is this; no matter how quickly you want to see results take your time and progress slowly. If you start well below what you think you are capable of and slowly increase it will not only improve your chances of sticking with an physical fitness routine but it will also drastically reduce your chances for injury and overtaxing yourself and giving up.
Low Impact for Beginners
(1 Set of 20 Seconds for each motion)
Total Body Strength and Toning
(2 Sets of 10 repetitions for each movement)
- Alternating Lunge
- Push Up
- Bent over Arm Circles
- Ice Skaters
- Lateral Arm Raises
Core (Abs, Obliques, Lower Back)
(2 sets of 10 repetitions for each movement)
- Side Hip Raise (Left)
- Side Hip Raise (Right)
- Pilates Swimmers
(1 set of ~20 seconds each stretch)
High Intensity Workout For Weight Loss At Home
The most effective way to drop fat at the gym: High-intensity interval workouts. The training style can be modified for beginners—and will continue to work for seasoned gym-goers.
The following workouts—provided by Kenny Santucci, training director of Body by Solace at SOLACE New York gym in New York City, a studio that offers CrossFit and Studio classes—are high-intensity and, when coupled with a good diet, will help you shed lbs. So, if you’re looking to seriously transform your body by implementing your bodyweight and gym staples like kettlebells, rowers, and barbells, you’re in luck. Though that might be a poor choice of words…
Directions: The idea is to move through these workouts as quickly as possible. Most of these routines target various muscle groups, so your lower body will have some reprieve while you’re torching your upper body and vice versa. The goal is to keep your workouts metabolic, but passing out is never a fitness feat people look highly upon so if you need to take some time to catch your breath, do so.
Workout 1: Rowing with the Devil
Directions: Alternate EMOM (every minute on the minute) for a total of 20 minutes. Take little to no rest.
1 min: 20-Calorie Rows
1 min: 10 Burpees
On the odd minute (a.k.a. what you’ll start with) – Adjust the monitor on an erg/rower so it reads calories rather than meters or Watts. Row until you burn 20 calories. If you row at a 1:45/500m pace it’ll take you somewhere around a minute.
On the even minute – Hop off the rower and bang out 10 burpees
Workout 2: Belly Up
Directions: Grab a 16 or 24kg kettlebell and complete the following moves for 10 reps each, repeating the circuit until 2 minutes elapses. Take little to no rest.
10 Goblet Squat Thrusters: Hold a kettlebell by the horns—either side of the handle—and squat down. Then, explosively push through your legs and press the kettlebell overhead.
10 Sumo Deadlift High Pulls: Take a wide stance and grab a kettlebell with both hands. Hinge your hips back and bend your knees. Keeping your chest and head up, extend through your hips and knees, raising your elbows out and pulling the kettlebell to shoulder-height.
10 Kettlebell Swings
Workout 3: Summer Abs
Directions: Complete 6 rounds total, taking 30-seconds rest after each one.
- 30-Second Hollow Hold: Lie on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you and arms extended overhead. Raise your upper body off the floor, using your core. Keep your arms straight (behind your head) and your toes pointed away from you. Engage your abs as you hollow your belly and slightly round your lower back. Lift your legs off the floor.
- 30 V-Ups: Lie on the floor in a hollow body position (as stated above) so your upper body is off the floor, your arms are extended overhead, and your legs are straight out in front of you. With your feet together and toes pointed, raise both legs up, keeping them completely straight, while raising your upper body off the ground. Touch your hands to your toes.
- 30 Butterfly Situps: Lie face-up on the floor with your hips open (outter thighs touching the ground), knees bent, and the soles of your feet touching. Engage your core and sit up, reaching your fingers to your toes. Slowly return to the start position.
Workout 4: Aggravated Assault
Directions: Complete 5 rounds for time, taking little to no rest.
- 10 Calories on Assault (Air Resistance) Bike: Work as quickly as you can.
- 50-Foot Double-Kettlebell Farmers Walks: With a 24 or 32kg kettlebell in either hand, walk 50 feet (or 15 meters) without stopping.
Workout 5: Push-Pull
Directions: Complete moves with reps as follows: 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2. In between each set, sprint 200m. Rest as needed.
Workout 6: Dirty 30
Directions: Complete the following moves for time, taking little to no rest.
- 30 Deadlifts (225-305lb)
- 30 Calorie Row
- 30 Burpees Over the Bar: Complete a burpee, then jump over the bar from your deadlift. Keep hopping over after each rep.
Workout 7: Larenzo Lames
Directions: Complete as many rounds as you can in 12 minutes, taking little to no rest.
- 15 Renegade Row Pushups: Assume a pushup position with a 20-30lb dumbbell under or near your right hand. Row the dumbell, complete a pushup, then move the dumbbell to your left side and repeat. Keep alternating side.
- 30 Mountain Climbers (per leg)
- 15 Shoulder Press (20-30lb dumbbell)
- 30 Bent-Over Rows: Grab a barbell, palms facing down, bend your knees and lean your torso forward. Keep your back straight and chest out as you row the barbell to your chest.
Workout 8: A Walk in the Park
Directions: Complete 5 rounds, taking little to no rest in between.
- 20 Walking lunges
- 20 Tricep Dips: Perform off a 20- 24-inch box or bench.
- 20 Box jumps
Workout 9: Baller
Directions: Complete wall balls for time, then EMOM weight situps—taking little to no rest.
- 75 Wall Balls for Time (14-20min): Hold a weighted ball in front of you at chest-height with your hands on either side, toward the bottom of the ball. Keeping your shoulders back, chest up, and feet shoulder-width apart, squat down then rise explosively. Just like a thruster, draw power from your legs and drive the ball up so it strikes the wall. Catch the ball and immediately squat down in to the next rep.
- 10 minute EMOM (every minute on the minute) 10 Wall Ball Situps: Face a wall with a medicine ball/weighted ball in your hands. Lie down on your back with your knees bent. Sit up and throw the ball against the wall. Catch the ball and come back down to the start position. Rest for however much time is remaining in the minute.
Workout 10: The Beast
Directions: Complete 6 rounds of the following exercises, resting as needed.
- 600-Meter Run (One and a half times around a standard 400m track)
- 60 V-Ups
- 600-Meter Row
- 60 Pushups
- 600-Meter Med Ball Carry (14-20lb)
- 60 Jump Squats