Cardio can be a challenge. Sometime’s performing a cardio workout can be downright discouraging. When I was an offensive lineman at the University of Western Ontario, I was definitely considered a “Big Man”. As a so called “Big Man” running long distances all at once was certainly a challenge. I knew that running was by far one of the best ways to improve my cardiovascular function. But here’s the thing: not everyone loves running (me included). For all those who aren’t interested in a long run, I’ve created a workout for you. To be clear, you will still achieve a vigorous cardio exercise from this workout, but with some added excitement to keep things fresh. I call this workout Big Man Cardio, but this is for anyone who wants an excellent cardiovascular workout.
Here’s how to do it: Find 10 yards of open space—in your garage, in your basement, at the gym, in your backyard, or at the park — and mark the start and end of the distance. Not sure how long 10 yards is? Just take 10 giant steps, and you’ll be close enough.
Start a 20 minute timer. In the first minute, complete one 10-yard length. Then rest the remainder of that minute.
In the second minute (as demonstrated in the video below), complete two 10-yard lengths, and then rest. In the third minute, three lengths. And so on, until you can’t finish the designated number of lengths in a minute.
You don’t need to touch the floor like a shuttle run or suicide drill at the end of every 10-yard length. Just make sure one foot crosses before you pivot back around.
FYI: This is going to be extremely easy during the first 10 minutes. Consider this your built-in warmup. Walk the 10-yard distances for the first few minutes, slowly increasing your pace as the minutes add up.
The reason you don’t want to go all-out from the start? This workout turns brutal, quickly. You’ll blow up if you sprint the entire time or don’t take advantage of your rest breaks.
Facing challenges head on will not only improve your physical fitness but also your mental fitness. It’s always important to understand that fitness training is as much a mental workout as it is a physical one. Finding a way to overcome challenges in our workouts only makes us stronger in our challenges in life. So challenge yourself Hamilton. Get out there and get active!