by Dana Cavalea August 22, 2017

I have done the research. Very few people enjoy slaving on treadmills, ellipticals, stairmasters, or other standard cardio machines 30-45 minutes per day, everyday in order to optimize cardiovascular health and body composition.
I get it. Who has the time!
But more importantly than time, how many of us want to do less and get 10x out of it? Probably all of us.
Hit the grindstone hard for 1-2 minutes and be done. That sounds great to me. The only caveat to this equation is you will have to lift your effort level. You will be required to lift your effort level to a point of temporary discomfort, but it will be so worth it!
I have found most people love traditional cardio at gyms for 2 reasons:
1. They do not know what else to do for cardiovascular health
2. They do not enjoy pushing themselves that hard.
Standardized cardio makes for the perfect choice if the above is you. Unfortunately, 20-30 minutes of moderate intensity will not really do much to change your body composition though.
How many folks do you see at your gym that have been on the same cardio routine of 30 minutes per day while they watch the Ellen Show everyday and you see no real change in their body?
In order to truly change your "look" and "feel", you must force the heart to contract rapidly, then recover. That is the only way. Hard and rapid contraction.
Distance Runners have this same issue. They are very comfortable tacking on mileage, but struggle when it comes to sprinting and anaerobic/ burst type work.
If runners could add this type of training to their regiment, the results would be drastic in terms of endurance and better personal times.
But for everybody else, here is my suggestion:
Yes, you read that right. Once you have built a base. So if you have a base of conditioning under you, to the point where exercise does not exhaust you, but you feel you have a good base of fitness, then it is time to step it up.
My preferred method is using airdyne fan bikes, but for those who do not have access, you can add high speed or high resistance intervals to any routine.
For example, if you enjoy the elliptical, sprint hard for 30 seconds, then recover for the same. To make it more difficult, you can work in a 2:1 work to rest ratio, sprinting for 30 seconds and recovering for 15 seconds.
The goal is to challenge the body's ability to work and then recover. Hard contraction of the heart, massive blood flow, followed by a rapid recovery. That is training. Training is about pushing your work and recovery ceiling/ threshold each time you train to the next level.
Most just train to comfortable and next thing you know, you have been on the same routine for most of your adult life without change. Tracking sets, reps, weights, and work/ recovery times is essential.
Getting back to the days where athletes and "fitness" folks bring in a notebook to the gym is and was the good old days. The reality is, there is no substitute for writing it down and tracking day over day improvement. #trainlikeapro
Dana Cavalea
Dana Cavalea

Dana Cavalea is the World Champion Director of Strength and Conditioning & Performance of the New York Yankees. Currently, he is a High Performance Speaker & Consultant to Pro Athletes, Entrepreneurs, Business Executives, and Workforces on lifestyle strategies to reduce stress, improve work/life integration, and most importantly improve daily performance /outcomes. Book Dana to Speak at your Company Event or Conference Today!

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