There’s just something about the word “run” that makes people cringe all the way to their feet. Don’t get me wrong; some of us love a peaceful evening run, but the other half of the population just can’t stomach the thought of running.
Maybe it’s because you’re not conditioned to run long distances, or maybe it’s because you simply hate the act itself. Either way, you want to build your cardio and burn those maddening calories.
Fortunately, I’ve come bearing good news. You don’t have to run!
Here are some alternative forms of cardio that can get you the body you’ve been craving for gameday or that Snapchat-worthy night out. Plus, they’re all offered through UF RecSports at Southwest Recreation Center.
Who says that you can’t dance away that pizza you just ate? It is an extremely effective workout, and the constant dance movements take your mind off the fact that you’re performing intense cardio.
Circuit training is a fun and exciting way to switch up your cardio. Carrying out six to 10 different exercises with little rest in-between gives your body the burn that it needs. Try making these exercises something you enjoy: jump rope, squats, burpees, lunges or some push-ups. Be sure to alternate the pace and intensity of each exercise to increase your metabolism, keep your brain busy and making you less willing to quit halfway through the workout.
This form of exercise takes cardio to a whole new level. For most people, kickboxing gives them a sense of self-empowerment and strength; it also enhances your balance and reflexes. It is also a great stress reliever during exam week or the occasional Netflix binge. You can get even more involved by joining the UF Kickboxing Sports Club.
Swimming yields the same effects as a run. When you swim, however, your heart rate is steadier because you’re submerged under water. This keeps your lungs from yelling at you to stop and slow down. Your lungs won’t be the only organ thanking you, either. Swimming gives you a way to do cardio without the strain on your joints.
Don’t let the simplicity of a spin class fool you. Spin is an amazing workout out that helps build both cardio and muscle. It targets the muscles in your butt and legs giving you the body you’ve been dying for. Challenge yourself by increasing the resistance on the bike.
Next time you hear the word run, you can brush it right off your shoulder, but be sure to keep those cute running shoes…. Just in case.