Sep 012010

When you think about endurance workouts what pops into mind? Jogging, exercise bikes, treadmills, swimming laps, elliptical machines, and rowing machines top almost every list. Do the thought of doing these exercises day after day make you cringe?

Endurance workouts do not need to be boring. You can create as much variety and fun as you want. A great example of this is Tae Bo. When you are hearing a trainer barking out commands, punching, kicking, twisting, turning, and being highly explosive you have no time to get bored. The entire class is grunting, shouting, and having a great time. The sweat is flowing, hearts are pounding, and endurance is being challenged.

Maybe you are one of the people who only loves to have weight bars in your hands. You have tried to stay away from endurance workouts. It is time to take a new look at your weight equipment. Circuit training with weights can give you great endurance training while still hitting the iron. You will be lifting much lower weights and moving very quickly. Your goal is to get your heart rate up and keep it there for 30 to 60 minutes. Using a wide range of larger moves. Lunges, squats, dead lifts, Olympic cleans, and other big movements allow you to engage more muscles and get the heart going. Do not be tempted to stand around doing curls, they are not going to engage enough muscles to be effective in endurance training.

Another form of endurance training which is complete fun is obstacle courses. Many parks and fitness areas have setup courses to challenge you. By running from station to station and working through the obstacles you can keep the heart pounding and build great endurance.

We talked about circuit training in relation to weights, but you can use it for a wide variety of exercises, too. Setup a circuit which includes jumping rope, hitting a punching bag, high speed, jumping jacks, and other fast moving exercises. You can avoid boredom by regularly rotating in new exercises.

Where many people find jogging boring, you can add a great amount of variety. Start by jogging a short distance then breaking into a fast run for 40 yards. Go back to jogging a while then challenge yourself with a sprint again. By varying the pace and intensity your interest stays high and your endurance workouts become even more effective.

As you are beginning to see, endurance training is not isolated to only a few activities. You can find a wide variety of ways to drive your body to greater levels of endurance. Do not let boredom stop your workouts. The best way to stay highly interested is to choose several different varieties and switch between them. Your body will pay you back with higher levels of fitness due to the cross training efforts. Endurance workouts can be great fun if you do not settle for doing things the same old ways.

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