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What Cardio Should I Do

Hey, I gotta lose a lot of weight and realized for me in my situation it would be ok if i lost a little bit of muscle while trying to lose a lot of fat. that is why i want to do morning cardio. my problem is i dont have a treadmill.

im having a hard time thinking of cardio to do. i have a punching bag, maybe there is something i can do with that, where i live it is too cold in the morning to go out for a jog. i have a jumprope but i dont know if the intenisty of that would be too high.

any ideas would be awesome.
thanks

The punching bag is an awsome workout, uses muscles you never knew you had. I had great results using HIIT, an internet search will find lots of info on this type of cardio. You can do it on a treadmill, outside, or other cardio machines and I’ve done it with jump rope too. Try this one for jump rope from T-Nation http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=174rope
good luck and try something like HOT-ROX, i know it helped me to do my workouts when something else is pushing me to do it, you’ll be money after a couple weeks of HIIT.

You can get an excellent cardio workout with a Heavy Bag and Jump Rope.

Try punching ballistically for 30 seconds (at least 3 punches in every combination!) followed by 30 seconds sprint on the rope. Do this for a 3 minute round. Do 4 rounds with 1 minutes rest and build up to 6 rounds.

When you are comfortable with 6 rounds, drop the rest to 30 seconds between rounds. Then you can start adding minutes :).

Hope that helps.

Yours,
Beev

Hey, there, grandfunkhickle!

I can appreciate where you’re coming from. You want to lose that weight – whatever the price!

When you lose weight, it’s likely that you will lose muscle. And that’s if you’re smart about it. But if you’re not smart about dieting down, then you’ll lose a lot more.

Your body requires a certain number of calories to maintain its current weight, even in a resting state. But that number is based on the amount of muscle you have. The more muscle you lose, the lower your caloric requirements.

Additionally, let me throw out one last thing. LOTS of cardio won’t cause you to lose weight. Haven’t you seen those cardio addicts in the gym who do hours and hours of cardio? You know, the ones who are soaked in sweat, who’ve been coming at the same time for months, but whose body comp hasn’t changed a bit?!?!?

There’s nothing wrong with cardio. It’s great for your heart, and it will help you a little bit to achieve your goals. But make sure you’re doing resistance training to keep muscle loss to a minimum, and overhaul your diet.

There’s a ton of stuff here on this site about nutrition and manipulating body comp and cardio and resistance training. Read, read, read. Search, search, search. (grin) Take a look at John Berardi’s “7 Habits of Highly Effective Nutritional Programs” and “T-Dawg 2.0.”

Good luck to you!!!

Check out Mike Mahler’s High Octane Cardio (HOC):

http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=244high2

Uses both a punching bag and a skipping rope

I’ve got a question about that HOC w/ the bag… I’ve taken a bit of kickboxing, and asked for advice on bag usage on this forum. The concensus is that when working on the bag, light technically planned punches are key in training, and heavy all out training usually comes near the end of the training session. I guess I’m mixing up using the bag to get technically competant at punching and punching for conditioning. I know that when I got solid punching for a while my shoulders tighten up and support poor punching form.

I guess I’m thinking about this one too much… When doing bag HOC is it simply to get a good workout in there? Do your bag ‘training’ later?

[quote]NBeev1 wrote:
You can get an excellent cardio workout with a Heavy Bag and Jump Rope.

Try punching ballistically for 30 seconds (at least 3 punches in every combination!) followed by 30 seconds sprint on the rope. Do this for a 3 minute round. Do 4 rounds with 1 minutes rest and build up to 6 rounds.

When you are comfortable with 6 rounds, drop the rest to 30 seconds between rounds. Then you can start adding minutes :).Hope that helps.

Yours,
Beev[/quote]

I also tend to find the usual cardio fare boring but I really enjoy the heavy bag for its cardio benefits as well as the obvious stress releasing benefits of pounding on the heavy bag.

The workout you describe above is pretty much identical to what I do with some minor variations. I have a wristwatch with a stop watch function, which I set for 3 minutes (the length of a boxing round)then I hang it up on a hook in my basement/ workout room near my heavy bag.

After a general body warmup of about five minutes, I’m ready to start. I start the stop watch, and then proceed to hit the heavy bag anywhere from 30 to 50 times, using various combinations, then I jog on the spot for about 30 to 50 times (I used to hit the bag, and jog for a certain amount of time each, but found it easier to just hit and jog for a certain amount of reps…in this way I’m not constantly distracted by looking over at the stop watch to see how much time has elapsed).

So I alternate between hitting the bag and jogging on the spot until 3 minutes has elapsed, and the buzzer on my watch sounds. Then I quickly restart the stopwatch (which can be done in less than 2 seconds), and then I do either a set of crunches or leg lifts for 20 reps, then jog on the spot until a minute has elapsed…which counts as my “rest” between rounds.

I do 5 rounds of 3 minutes each for the heavy bag/jog on the spot combo’s…along with the 1 minute “rest” periods between rounds.

I really like it as I don’t find it boring…and it is an extremely hard (for me anyway), but effective cardio workout. I used to do my heavy bag workouts for 15 to 20 minutes straight i.e. hit the bag constantly, without any jogging on the spot, or “rest” periods, but I found that by the end of the workout, my shoulders were so wasted that I could barely lift my arms, and I had so little strength that my punches were more like love taps. I find my current manner is more effective, in that my heart rate stays elevated for the entire process, but I’m not burning my shoulders out, and my punches have power from start to finish, without taking too much out of my shoulders.

In Colorado we have alot of hills. So I go for a long walk, mostly uphill carrying a dumbell in each hand (15 to 30 lbs. depending on the day). This is alot harder than it sounds, when you get to the top of the hill, your arms are really sore and then you still have to carry them back. This also works really good with cinder blocks.

lantzcaper, sounds good. I never thought of trying a rep approach. Unfortunately, I have no regular access to a heavy bag at the moment, so I havent done bag work for a couple of months.

Here are a few other good Bag Drills you can try out.

SEVENS

Sevens, is basically straight punches thrown in pyramid fashion i.e.

1, 1-2, 1-2-3 all the way up to seven, then starting all over again at one! take a note of how many pyramids you do in one 3 minute round and try to beat it the next time :).

SPEED RUNS

With speed runs, you basically hit the bag freestyle for a period of time, then when a coach/training partner says go, you explode into a frenzy of straight punches for 10 seconds, which is done twice on the bag, then the third speed run is basically done until you feel the need to stop! This is an excellent drill for building shoulder endurance and it gets your heart rate right the way up there :).

Again, take note of how long your last Speed run lasts and try to beat it each workout. Last time I tried it, I got up to 40+ seconds.

10x10

This is another excellent conditioning drill! What you do here is throw 10 straight punches as fast and as hard as possible, rest 10 seconds, and repeat! After 10 sets, rest one minute and repeat, for ten sets! That is 1000 Punches you will throw!

Hope you find those useful :slight_smile:

Yours,
Beev

Swim

[quote]hoosierdaddy wrote:
Swim[/quote]

I agree! 50-100m sprints really take it out of you as well so you can do a great workout in a short amount of time. It works your whole body and is non-impact. Plus if you learn to swim properly and how to position your body you get a fantastic abs workout as well because you have to continually contract your core muscles to maintain a streamlined position, much like the “plank” exercise for abs. Doing butterfly properly is a sadistic form of doing crunches due to the “dolphin” movement you have to do, it also really helps with shoulder flexibility.

Ben

PS Have you ever seen a top level sprint distance swimmer with bad shoulders? They don’t exist… all have the classic V shape torso.

Plus there’s no eccentric resistance in swimming, which makes recovery from weight training easier.

[quote]NateN wrote:
Plus there’s no eccentric resistance in swimming, which makes recovery from weight training easier.[/quote]

Thanks Nate, that’s the other thing I forgot, once you get used to swimming (you have to allow for some soreness for by doing something new!)you can go really hard in a session and not feel a thing the next day because it is non-impact. Cycling is similar as well in this regard.

Also, the water seems to have soothing effect on the muscles as well. It is also important to work antagonistic muscles like with weights ie after doing freestyle you should do backstroke. The opposite action “massages” the muscles that were used during the previous type of stroke and helps with recovery.

Ben

First time poster, long time lurker :^)

I actually prefer the heavy bag (in may case, an I&I Sports Fighting Man Dummy) for my cardio exclusively. I incorporate “HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) Rounds” in a 1:1 ratio in the following manner:

30-seconds balls-to-the-wall striking and kicking at lactate threshold, immediately followed by 30-seconds “active rest” such as pacing, crunches, etc. (for you LEOs out there, dryfire your sidearm on a Beamhit laser target at distance during this time!).

The 30-seconds on/30-seconds off counts as one round. I do 20 rounds (20-minutes). This also helps develop a good “don’t quit” mindset, that is, if you can survive it.

One word of caution, you can easily over do it and descend into an over trained state. I recommend no more than twice a week for a while, and always take your Surge when you’re “finished” .

After you build up your endurance, try 2:1 (1-minute all-out/30-second active rest).

[quote]NBeev1 wrote:
lantzcaper, sounds good. I never thought of trying a rep approach. Unfortunately, I have no regular access to a heavy bag at the moment, so I havent done bag work for a couple of months.

Here are a few other good Bag Drills you can try out.

SEVENS

Sevens, is basically straight punches thrown in pyramid fashion i.e.

1, 1-2, 1-2-3 all the way up to seven, then starting all over again at one! take a note of how many pyramids you do in one 3 minute round and try to beat it the next time :).

SPEED RUNS

With speed runs, you basically hit the bag freestyle for a period of time, then when a coach/training partner says go, you explode into a frenzy of straight punches for 10 seconds, which is done twice on the bag, then the third speed run is basically done until you feel the need to stop! This is an excellent drill for building shoulder endurance and it gets your heart rate right the way up there :).

Again, take note of how long your last Speed run lasts and try to beat it each workout. Last time I tried it, I got up to 40+ seconds.

10x10

This is another excellent conditioning drill! What you do here is throw 10 straight punches as fast and as hard as possible, rest 10 seconds, and repeat! After 10 sets, rest one minute and repeat, for ten sets! That is 1000 Punches you will throw!

Hope you find those useful :slight_smile:

Yours,
Beev[/quote]

Some nice variations there that I would never have thought of…I’ll have to give them a try sometime. Sound like real killers…

Last winter, I did a circuit much like what some of the other guys described. It was 3 minutes on the heavy bag, 3 minutes on the jump rope, 3 minutes with a deck of cards (assign each suit a different excercise, do the number of reps for each card). Repeat thrice.

Now, the guy I did these with replaced the jump rope with interval sprints. The timing is too spaced out for ideal intensity, but it was pretty tough.

I agree with some of the other comments: a quality jump rope is perhaps the best piece of exercise equipment you can buy for under $25.

Some MMA folks advocate rope, calisthenics, rope. Likewise, Coach Joh n Davies posted a fat-burning routine on this stie somewhere. I was trying out his renegade iron crosses: rope, cross, rope, repeat until ass is kicked.

Besides a good jump rope, you might want to pick up a decent, inexpensive heart monitor: I like the Timex, some people don’t. Forget all the target / training zone jazz, it just helps you stay focused and monitor your process. You could also double up using the same watch as a timer.

Good luck and have fun.

[quote]grandfunkhickle wrote:
im having a hard time thinking of cardio to do. i have a punching bag, maybe there is something i can do with that, where i live it is too cold in the morning to go out for a jog. i have a jumprope but i dont know if the intenisty of that would be too high.

any ideas would be awesome.
thanks[/quote]

How cold is it? I’m home in Maine for the holidays and let me tell you it is COLD. I’m currently on a cutting cycle and going out for a 2-3 mile jog/walk with an 80lb backpack almost every morning. A couple sweatshirts and a hat, and I come back hot and drenched in sweat. Maybe it’s not as cold as you think.

If you are wondering about the 80lb pack, I just took a good backpack with an internal frame, and then bought a couple of those long tubular sand bags at home depot. Adjust them so they fit in the bag and/or dump a little sand out, and you’re in business.

RIT Jared