Ah, it's June again. In many parts of the country, now's the perfect time to get out of the sweaty, smelly, stuffy gym and take our workouts outdoors---unless it's already 90-plus degrees with nearly 100-percent humidity, as it is where I live. As such, my fellow gym-goers and I continue our health-club confinement, and it's getting to some of us. I can see it on the faces of the folks crowding the cardio equipment night after night: they're over it.
We all have our reasons for not loving cardio. It's tedious, and well, it's hard! So, for those of you stuck indoors like I am, I'd like to offer my solution for whatever cardio-related issue confounds you, frustrates you, and deters you from your workouts. Here we go...
Problem: You hate the treadmill; you prefer your workouts to be a social affair.
Solution: Ditch the treadmill and try a group-exercise class. Whether it's dance, Spinning, or kickboxing, there's sure to be a cardio offering that suits your interests and level of coordination.
Problem: You're just not motivated when you're on your own.
Solution: Hire a trainer. (What? You knew it was coming.) It's too expensive, you say? Most trainers will accomodate a limited budget by offering 30-minute workouts or agreeing to meet infrequently, such as every other week. You can also save money by working out with one or more friends; group training means a significant discount per person.
Problem: You're not feeling challenged.
Solution: Odds are you've gotten into a rut of using the same program every time you get on a machine. To mix it up, try incorporating high-intensity intervals or experimenting with the machine's various functions, such as the incline.
Problem: You're sick of the elliptical.
Solution: So why not try something different? You're body will respond favorably to a change in your routine. Now's as good a time as any to try out the stepmill or take a boxing class.
Problem: "Losing that last 10 pounds" isn't as motivating a reason to work out as it used to be.
Solution: Sign up for a event. It can be a 5k run, a walk for your favorite charity, or, if you live in a large city, a skyscraper stair climb. Having something personally meaningful to achieve (and a set deadline in which to achieve it) can give you a new reason to work hard at the gym.
Problem: You need a change of scenery.
Solution: You can always suck it up and go outside. You just won't see me out there.