Cardio training is important for maintaining the health of the most important muscle in your body: the heart. One of the leading health problems today is heart disease and, for this reason, you cannot underestimate the importance of cardiovascular training.

Cardio workouts elevate your heart rate while increasing blood circulation and oxygen flow. Each time you exercise and increase your heart rate for a duration of 20 minutes or more, you increase your metabolism; and for the next few hours your body operates at this higher metabolic rate. This will result in the burning of more calories, the lowering of body fat and the strengthening of your heart and lungs. This faster metabolism only lasts for a few hours after the workout so you need to engage in some form of cardio almost everyday for it to be most effective (5 to 7 days a week), and for 20 to 60 minutes each time.

If you’re trying to gain weight and build muscle, cardio training may seem counter productive; and if you’re eating a lot of meat to increase your protein intake and using supplements to help you build muscle, you’re probably getting some fat in your diet. Burning fat calories can be done effectively with weight lifting, but you may be elevating your cholesterol. This makes cardio training important.

A good cardio workout not only raises your metabolism but also can increase hormone production, which can help you to feel better. You can also use cardio training as a way to change up your workout or to just cool down after weight training. Cardio after weight training increases blood and oxygen flow, which will aid your body in repairing muscle tissue.

With so many options out there for cardio training – such as walking, running, swimming, biking, step aerobics, kickboxing, rowing or jumping rope just to name a few – you shouldn’t have any problem finding one you enjoy.