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Shake up your cardio workout


Went overboard on V-Day chocolate? Feelin’ like you wanna start your spring shape-up now? Switch up your winter cardio for serious results. We've got some fun and easy ways to add a boost to your routine.

If you’re a runner: Change up the pace. Jog one lap around the track (or 2 min. on the treadmill) and then step up your pace on the next half lap, (or for 1 min. on the treadmill) and then bring it back down to a jog for the remainder. Keep this routine going for 15 to 20 minutes, or 6-8 laps around the track. This varied pattern gets your heart pumping in a whole new way and is a fab way to burn off calories. 

Looking for more of a challenge? Break up your workout with a couple stairs runs up the bleacher, or increase the incline on your treadmill. Greater resistance and incline burns even more calories. 

If you’re a swimmer: Switch up your strokes. Swim a 50 meter warm-up to get your body ready. Then, try 100 meters (4 laps) of a new stroke (ie, backstroke, butterfly, breaststroke, freestyle) you don’t usually practice. Grab a kickboard and target your legs for another 100 meters. Then, try a different stroke for another 100 meters. Repeat if desired. To cool down, to another 50 meters at a slower pace.

If you’re a gym bunny: Try the rowing machine. This not-often used (but super fun!) machine is great for boosting your heart rate while working your arms. Do a slow warm-up for 3 minutes and then move at a faster pace for 10 minutes. Cool down for another 3 minutes. 

If you’re a yogini: Change your practice. Hit up a new class or studio that you don’t often frequent. Or, try a couple video classes at home with a new instructor. Ever tried hot yoga? Grab a friend and give it a shot. And as with any new workout, make sure that you’re super hydrated and that you’re careful to respect your body’s limits. Don’t go all out, full speed ahead, or risk injury.  

BY ALYSSA OH AND JESSICA D’ARGENIO ON 2/16/2011 10:00:00 AM

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