Cardio

Sin City runners

Despite the fact that Vegas is known as the most extravagant, hangover, reckless city in the world (I guess so?), that doesn't mean you can't get your fitness going ;) Actually to my surprise, I had noticed already a while ago that a lot of athletes, fitness Pros, body builders and performers live here. Why? What do they do in a city that for the majority of people it's hard to survive past the third day?

Because Vegas is the city of SHOWS and ENTERTAINMENT. Think Cirque de Soleil, think Olympia. And let me tell you, GYMS over here are kickass. Hard core, well equipped, spacious. Las Vegas Athletic Club has even an indoor track. Great spots to eat healthy as well. Oh and the most wonderful WHOLE FOODS store!

This morning me and Mr. X (my bf, should I reveal his identity or not? Lol) went out for an early cardio session and we decided to run on the Strip, was great to see several other people doing the same and not only leftover human beings dragging knocked out from the night before!

Feels great to come home after cardio am, like if the hardest part of the day is over already ;)

On another note, I'm still thinking about Miami... it has been hard to leave for good, I get so attached to places. But this new life is exciting and I was ready for a change... yes very much.

Plus Vegas is delirious. I mean, look at this

Yes, get married and not even leave your car. Tunnel of love ah!

Cheers blog people, a kiss from another local attraction lol

How much does cardio really matter?

Some people consider cardio just a mere way to burn more calories, others swear by it and find it essential to maintain a certain body shape, some avoid it completely scared to lose muscle, others just do it when trying to lose weight. I always recommend to include cardio into a training program, just like weights, but regulate intensity, duration and frequency depending on your body type, training level and goal you have in mind. Personally I find cardio very effective when the goal is losing fat. These are the main reasons: Cut appetite Increase metabolism Lift mood, motivation And of course mobilize stored fat. First thing in the morning on empty stomach, about an hour, first 30 min of intervals, that's how I prefer my cardio. But there are lots of ways to do it and what really matters it's not much the time of the day, more when you can give your best in terms of performance and energy levels.

But what about GOALS and periodization? Like you rotate your weight training, your diet, so you should do with your cardio. To benefit from it, as rule of thumb I'd suggest to keep at least 1-2 sessions of HIIT a week (sprints, intervals, tabata etc), the remaining sessions being medium intensity and another one for recovery if you wish. If you are trying to gain muscle, I'd lower duration and frequency (shorter sessions about 30-40 min, 3 a week for example). To lose fat, raise duration and frequency (sessions up to 1 hour, even 6 a week, double am + pm if needed on few days).

What I wouldn't do is TONS of cardio regularly, unless you really have a lot of fat to lose or your training program requires it (training for marathons, for example). I rather have fewer sessions of great performance and intensity, rather than everyday mediocre ones. Cardio is toxic on your joints and put your body into a catabolic state easily, if not done properly. So you gotta learn how much cardio is good for you and your goals.

In the end cardio is a great tool to burn calories, improve endurance and anaerobic capacity, boost metabolism and of course strengthen the heart muscle. With diet and weights, constitute the perfect equation for a well trained, lean body. Just remember like weights, more is NOT better.

Take your cardio outside whenever you can!

Get HIGH

I mean, adrenaline high...what were you thinking? ;-) This morning I had a good HIIT cardio...yeah, the rabbit was "possessed", like good old times. I stopped sprinting for a while, because I had a nagging gluteus and ankle, but today I did great, I'm proud!

It went like this: 5min light run warm up. Then 16 sprints, in the following order- 4x45 sec @10mph, 4x30 sec @ 10.5mph, 4x25 sec @11mph, 4x15 sec @12mph... Jogging approx 1.5min @5.5mph  in between each sprint.

I like to finish with some uphill running, so I did 1min @5mph 5%, 1min @5.5mph 5.5%, 1min @6mph 6%, 1min @6mph 7%, no rest in between. Now I'm just walking to cool down.

So the reach the "HIGH", in my experience you need to: 1. Make it out of your house. No kidding! Sometimes the hardest part is getting to the gym or wherever you planning to do your cardio. 2. Resist the first 10min. Those SUCK. But its a downhill ride afterwards, well, SORT OF ;) 3. Keep a good playlist on your ipod. Music has an extreme influence on your performance, especially when you do several cardio sessions a week, last thing you need is spending 40min on the elliptical skipping songs. 4.HIIT. This type of cardio is the one with the most powerful effects. The "creme de la creme" in terms of EPOC and endorphine high, metabolism boost and so on. Of course, is the most tiring one. But even just 20 min of it have a more dramatic effect than 40 min on the bike watching the clock on the gym's wall.

Now that you know the tricks, go get HIGH!

Cheers, your Rabbit On Crack