HOW CAN YOU IMPROVE ENDURANCE AT THE GYM?

Whatever cardio training apparatus you are using, you will need to do a minimum of three sessions per week in order to boost your endurance. For beginners and anyone getting back into exercise after a long period of inactivity, you may want to start your session with 15 minutes on each of these three pieces of equipment in order to do a total of 45 minutes of exercise, before moving on to 20-minute sessions that total one hour. Once you have reached this threshold, it will be easier to do a longer session on a single piece of apparatus.

 

Spinning bike

Muscles used

Mainly your glutes, quads and calves (and to a lesser extent your abdominals).

 

The basic structure of a 40- to 60-minute session

  • 10-15 mins: warm up at a moderate pace and low resistance
  • 25-35 mins: training session at a regular pace and moderate resistance (roughly 70% of your maximum heart rate)
  • 5-10 mins: cool down at a low pace and low resistance

 

Variations

Progressively prolong the length of the main training session to increase the total time

  • Increase your pedalling speed and adapt the resistance to protect your knee joints
  • Use the interval method during the training session: Alternate 6-12 blocks of 30 to 60 seconds by varying the resistance and your body position (standing up)
  • Progressively increase the number of blocks

These variations will help your body to boost its endurance little by little and let you gradually extend the amount of time you exercise for.

 

Regular breathing

Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. The inhalation and exhalation should last the same amount of time.

 

Safety tips

Drink small mouthfuls regularly every 10-15 mins. Wear close-fitting clothing or even padded cycling shorts. Keep your knees facing forwards at all times.

 

Treadmill

Muscles used

Mainly your glutes, quads, hamstrings and calves (and to a lesser extent your abdominals).

 

The basic structure of a 40- to 60-minute session

  • 10-15 mins: warm up with a fast walk or a light jog
  • 25-35 mins: training session at a regular pace (roughly 70% of your maximum heart rate)
  • 5-10 mins: cool down with a fast walk or a light jog

 

Variations

  • Progressively prolong the length of the main training session to increase the total time
  • Shorten the warm-up phase to 5-10 mins
  • Increase your running speed
  • Use the interval method during the training session: Alternate 6-12 blocks of 30 to 60 seconds by varying the running speed (walk or jog / run or sprint = faster than your usual running speed)
  • Progressively increase the number of blocks

 

These variations will help your body to boost its endurance little by little and let you gradually extend the amount of time you exercise for.

 

Regular breathing

Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. The inhalation and exhalation should last the same amount of time. If you get a stitch, exhale for longer.

 

Safety tips

Drink small mouthfuls regularly every 10-15 mins. Take long strides by placing your heel down first (foot pointing in the same direction as the treadmill). Position yourself in the centre between the treadmill's arms.

 

Cross trainer

Muscles used

Mainly your glutes, quads, hamstrings and calves (and to a lesser extent your abdominals and upper body).

 

The basic structure of a 40- to 60-minute session

  • 10-15 mins: Warm up at a moderate pace and low resistance
  • 25-35 mins: Training session at a regular pace and moderate resistance (roughly 70% of your maximum heart rate)
  • 5-10 mins: Cool down at a low pace and low resistance

 

Variations

  • Progressively prolong the length of the main training session to increase the total time
  • Increase your pedalling speed and adapt the resistance to protect your knee joints

 

Use the interval method during the training session: Mountain or Interval programme

  • Progressively increase the number of mountains or intervals
  • Use the machine without the arm handles (like running): This requires more balance and more significant abdominal and core muscle work.

 

These variations will help your body to boost its endurance little by little and let you gradually extend the amount of time you exercise for.

 

Regular breathing

Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. The inhalation and exhalation should last the same amount of time.

 

Safety tips

Drink small mouthfuls regularly every 10-15 mins. Keep your knees pointing in the same direction as the cross trainer in order not to wiggle your hips (your body should stay pointing straight forward). Don't pull with your arms.

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