Cardio Workout of the Week: Building Endurance
|July 11, 2013||Posted by The Fit Scoop under Uncategorized|
I’ll confess – I love interval workouts. I love pushing to the max, getting the relief of recovery, and then pushing to the max again. I feel pleasantly exhausted and accomplished after these workouts. I also find that they go by faster because the effort level is changing frequently, breaking the workout into smaller “chunks” that are easier for my brain to handle. Running 6 x 800 meters hard sounds better to me than running moderately-hard for 3 mile straight. Nonetheless to be a successful athlete or even just a fit individual it is important to build endurance, the ability to hold a specific effort level over a longer period of time. Endurance workouts have the added benefit of shorter recovery times, higher fat metabolism, and they help lower your resting heart rate. Since this week’s workout focuses on increasing your endurance it is longer than the previous workouts-of-the week. Though the workout is 55 minutes, it can be shortened if you haven’t built up to a workout of that length yet.
This workout can be done on any cardio equipment or even outdoors. Start out with a 5 minute warm-up. Then move into a 20 minute segment where you start at a RPE of 12 and over the course of the 20 minutes you increase effort to a RPE of 14. Take 5 minutes at an RPE of 10 to recover, and then perform another 20 minute segment at a RPE of 12 increasing to 14. To keep things interesting, do the first 20 minute segment on no inline, but do the second 20 minute segment with a higher incline or more resistance (depending on what machine you are using). In order to keep the RPE between 12 and 14 during the second 20 minute segment you will have to go at a slower pace because of the added challenge of the incline or resistance. Finish up by cooling down for 5 minutes.
***An RPE of 12-14 is considered a “somewhat hard” effort. For an explanation of RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion) click here. If you prefer to use a heart rate monitor, aim for 65-75% of your maximum heart rate (MHR) during the endurance segments and 50-65% MHR during the recovery segment.
To make it easier: you can either perform just one 20 minute endurance segment or you can shorten the length of each endurance segment (i.e. do two 15 minute segments).
To make it harder: perform one straight 45 minute endurance segment by eliminating the 5 minute break in the middle. If you really want to extend your endurance, add another 20 minute segment for a total of 3 and you’ll end up with an 80 minute workout!