Cardiovascular fitness is a fundamental part of your overall health. Working on this aspect of your health allows your heart and lungs to become more efficient in delivering oxygen to your body. The most conventional way to strengthen your cardio is to run, but this exercise isn’t for everyone. Some people have joint issues that prevent them from running, and others simply hate the act itself. So, we’ve made a short list of cardio workout alternatives for non-runners that you can make a part of your routine instead.
Rowing machines are pretty common in gyms, and you can also invest in one to keep in your home. Though it may not look like much, rowing will quickly get your heart pounding and makes for an excellent cardio workout. To use a rowing machine, you grip a handle in front of you while sitting down, then pull it back repeatedly. The seat component will also move back and forth with you so you can push with your legs. Make sure to learn the proper form when you first start out with rowing in order to avoid injury. Generally, you’ll push back and straighten your legs while keeping your back straight. Then, when your legs are extended, you’ll lean back at an angle and pull the handle further by bringing your hands to your chest.
You’ve probably seen boxers jumping rope in movies, and there’s a good reason for this. Jumping rope is a great cardio exercise because you’re constantly activating your legs. It can be more convenient than running as well because you can do it indoors without a fancy treadmill. With some variations to your foot movements, you have the freedom to increase the intensity of the motion. For instance, you could do some hops on just one foot instead of two, then switch to the other side to make things harder.
Cycling is a cardio workout alternative for non-runners that many people find much more fun. While on a bike, you could enjoy the outdoors, move faster, and go further than you could on foot. The bicycle will also take away the impact from your knees. By keeping a reasonably challenging pace, you’ll gain all the same cardio benefits that running gives you without the tedium you might associate with it. If you’re just beginning to exercise or you’re a bit older, electric bicycles also exist to help you ease into workouts. Electric bicycles are advantageous because they give you the option of adjusting the difficulty with a motor that helps you pedal. As you get stronger, you can use lower levels of motor assistance and tangibly see the progress you’re making.