Cardio Challenge



In this guide:
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Invite your friends, family, or community to a cardio training challenge. It’s fun, and rewarding!


What is Cardio Training?

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Cardio training, also called cardiovascular exercise or aerobic exercise, is a type of physical activity that raises your heart rate and increases blood circulation. In this form of training, you’ll be aiming to maintain rhythmic movements for an extended period of time.


A few examples of cardio exercises include running, cycling, swimming, walking, rowing, and dancing.


Starting a cardio challenge with a friend is a great way to involve someone who might like to build a cardio habit with you, while keeping you motivated and on track!

Health Benefits of Balance Exercises

Improving cardiovascular health

Cardio training can help strengthen the heart and improve blood flow, which can reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Burns calories and aids in weight loss

Cardio training can help you burn calories, which can be helpful for weight loss and maintenance.

Increasing endurance and stamina

Cardio training can improve your ability to sustain physical activity for longer periods of time, making it easier to perform daily activities and participate in sports and other activities.

Reducing the risk of chronic diseases

Cardio training can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.

Improving mental health and mood

Cardio training can improve and mood by releasing endorphins, which are chemicals that can help improve your sense of well-being.

A Cardio Routine Done Right

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There are several key actions to consider when starting a cardio challenge that can help to improve your performance and reduce your risk of injury, including:


Warm up: It is important to warm up before doing any cardio training. A warm up can help to increase your heart rate, loosen your muscles, and reduce the risk of injury. A warm up can be as simple as walking or light jogging for 5-10 minutes.


Choose an appropriate intensity: The intensity of your cardio training should be based on your fitness level and goals.


Moderate intensity cardio training is defined as working at 50-70% of your maximum heart rate, while vigorous intensity cardio training is defined as working at 70-85% of your maximum heart rate.

Use proper form: Proper form is important to help prevent injury and maximize the benefits of your cardio training. This can include maintaining good posture, using correct breathing techniques, and keeping your movements smooth and controlled. 


Stay hydrated: It is important to stay hydrated during cardio training, especially if you are doing it for an extended period of time. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, muscle cramps, and other problems.


Cool down: A cool down after your cardio training can help to gradually lower your heart rate and reduce muscle soreness. A cool down can include light stretching or a leisurely walk.


Seek professional help: A personal coach may be worth considering if you’re just starting out. A coach can help you improve your form and offer feedback on your technique to increase your results.


By following these key actions, you can help to ensure that your cardio training is safe, effective, and enjoyable.

Types of Cardio Exercises

There are many different types of cardio exercises that you can do to change up your routine and keep your cardio challenge fun, including:

Walking, running or jogging

Running or jogging is a popular cardio activity that can be done on a treadmill, track, or outdoor course.


Biking can be done on a stationary bike or outdoors on a road or mountain bike.


Swimming is another low-impact cardio activity that can be done in a pool or open water. Swimming is a great option if you have a sensitivity to heat because it keeps you cool during your exercise.


Rowing can be done on a rowing machine or using resistance bands tied to a doorknob, or in a rowboat, kayak, or canoe on water.


High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a type of cardio training that involves short bursts of intense activity followed by periods of rest.


Dance-based cardio activities such as Zumba or salsa dancing can be a fun way to get your heart rate up. Invite your friends for added fun!


Cross-training involves doing a variety of cardio activities to add variety to your workouts and challenge different muscle groups.



There are many other ways to practice cardio, and the best activity for you will depend on your fitness level, preferences, and goals.

Start a Cardio Challenge


Determine your fitness level

Consider your current fitness level and any health conditions you may have, and choose activities that are appropriate for you. If you are new to cardio training or have any health concerns, it is a good idea to consult with a healthcare provider before starting a new exercise routine.


Set a goal

Determine what you want to achieve through your cardio training, such as improving cardiovascular health, losing weight, or increasing endurance. Having a clear goal can help you stay motivated and on track.


Choose activities you enjoy

Select cardio activities that you enjoy, as this will make it more likely that you will stick with your training routine. If you don’t enjoy running, for example, you may want to try biking or swimming instead.


Create a schedule

Decide how many days per week you will do cardio training and at what time of day. Make sure to allow for rest days to allow your body to recover.


Start slowly

If you are new to cardio training or returning to it after a break, start slowly and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts. This can help to reduce the risk of injury and make the transition easier.


Vary your workouts

To avoid boredom and continue making progress, vary your workouts by trying different activities, increasing the intensity, or adding intervals.


Track your progress

Use a tracking method, such as a journal or app, to keep track of your workouts and progress. This can help you see your improvements and stay motivated.

Overcoming Cardio Training Setbacks

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We know that life gets in the way sometimes, making it hard to stick to your routine. By using the following strategies, you can overcome some of the more common setbacks and stay on track with your cardio challenge.


Find a workout buddy: Having a workout buddy can provide motivation, accountability, and a sense of community. Invite a friend to join you in your cardio challenge and keep each other motivated!


Set small, achievable goals: Rather than setting a goal to run a marathon, try setting a goal to run for 20 minutes three times a week. This can help you build momentum and stay motivated.


Mix up your workouts: To avoid boredom, try different activities and switch up your workouts. This can help to keep things interesting and prevent you from getting stuck in a rut.


Find an activity you enjoy: If you don’t enjoy running, try swimming, biking, or dancing. It’s important to find an activity that you enjoy, as this will make it more likely that you will stick with it.


Be consistent: Consistency is key to building a cardio training habit. Try to make it a regular part of your routine and schedule it in advance.


Find a way to stay motivated: Motivation can come from within or from external sources such as a personal trainer, a fitness class, or a workout buddy. Find what works for you and use it to stay motivated.


Don’t be too hard on yourself: If you miss a workout or don’t feel like you did as well as you wanted to, don’t be too hard on yourself. Just get back on track and try again.

Common Questions

It is possible to do cardio and strength training on the same day, but it depends on your goals and schedule. If your goal is to improve cardiovascular fitness and muscle endurance, you can do cardio and strength training in the same workout.


However, if your goal is to build muscle mass and strength, it may be better to separate the cardio and strength training sessions by doing them on different days. This will allow you to focus on building muscle mass and strength during your strength training sessions, and then focus on improving cardiovascular fitness during your cardio sessions.


Additionally, you should also consider your schedule and energy level, as well as recovery time to avoid over-training.

Great question! The answer to this will vary from person to person.


It’s important to have a balance of cardio and strength training in your weekly exercise routine, as well as adequate rest and recovery. Additionally, it’s important to listen to your body and be aware of the signs of overtraining, such as excessive fatigue, irritability, and a decrease in performance.


Overtraining can lead to injury, burnout, and decreased performance. It can also lead to imbalances in the body, such as a loss of muscle mass and a decrease in metabolism.

Eating a light, balanced meal or snack beforehand can provide you with the energy you need to perform at your best and help you avoid fatigue during your workout.


It’s best to eat 30 minutes to an hour before exercising, depending on the size and content of the meal. It’s also important to stay hydrated before and during your workout by drinking plenty of water.


Here are a few snacks you can try before starting a cardio challenge:

  • Fruits
  • Yogurt
  • Lean protein (chicken, fish, tofu)
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts or seeds
  • Peanut butter or almond butter
  • Energy bars or gels
  • Water.

Resources to Help You Succeed

There are many support systems that can help you get started with your cardio challenge and create a routine, including:


Hiring a personal trainer or coach: A personal trainer or coach can provide customized workouts, guidance, and motivation to help you reach your cardio goals.


Joining a gym or fitness center: Many gyms and fitness centers offer a variety of cardio equipment and may also have personal trainers or fitness classes available.


Participating in group fitness classes: Group fitness classes can provide a sense of community and accountability, as well as guidance from a trained instructor.


Using an app or online program: There are many apps and online programs that offer workouts, tracking, and other features to help you build a cardio habit.


Seeking support from friends and family: Sharing your cardio goals with friends and family and asking for their support can help you stay motivated and on track. Try the MasterHealth cardio challenge with a friend to keep you accountable!


Seeking support from a mental health professional: A mental health professional can help you work through any mental or emotional barriers that may be hindering your progress.


Setting up a home gym: If you have the space and resources, setting up a home gym can provide convenient access to cardio equipment and remove the need to travel to a gym.

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