Tone Up With These Fat Blasting Cardio Workouts!

Resistance training is the best way to develop toned muscles.

Toning Workouts

Tone up faster with a HIIT fat burning workout!

But without cardio you will not be able to appreciate the fruits of your labour.

Resistance training and cardio are inseparable in a muscle-toning program.

While resistance training tones muscle, cardio further increases the rate you burn body fat.

There are also other benefits to cardio:

  • Improves blood circulation
  • Manages blood glucose levels
  • Strengthens immune system
  • Removes toxins from the body
  • Reduces the risk of heart disease, diabetes and other illnesses

But how should you do cardio?

There Are 2 Types Of Cardiovascular Exercise…

1. Steady State Cardio

In this type of cardio, you maintain a steady pace over a pre-determined period of time or distance.

Steady state cardio is popularly associated with long distance running, cross-country biking or triathlons.

With steady state cardio, your body is working toward achieving efficiency. This means it is learning and adapting a process or system whereby your body is efficiently managing its sources of energy.

As you know, energy comes from calories from the 3 macronutrients: carbohydrates, protein and fat.

Because you are working at a steady pace, the body does not require immediate energy which is supplied by carbohydrates.

Instead, when you do steady state cardio, the body draws its energy from stored fat. Sounds good right?

Yes, except that the body also burns off the component that uses up more calories: muscle protein. The more muscle you have the more calories you burn and for endurance trainers that means less energy.

That is why long distance runners, cross country bikers and triathlon participants are lean but hardly have toned muscle on them.

2. High Intensity Interval Training

This type of cardio is popularly referred to by its acronym, HIIT.

Unlike steady state cardio, HIIT involves several short bursts of all-out effort followed by equally short rest periods.

If steady state cardio requires you to maintain a pace equivalent to 65% to 75% of your Maximum Heart Rate or MHR for 30 minutes or longer, HIIT will get you to work from 85% to 95% of your maximum heart rate for 20-30 seconds.

HIIT is the best form of cardio to get a toned body for the following reasons:

  • 85% to 95% of your MHR is already at the Anaerobic Zone; this means your body is using carbohydrates as its main source of energy.The fewer carbohydrates you have in your system, the lower the risk of converting excess carbohydrates into body fat.
  • You are working the largest muscles of the body in HIIT: the legs, hip joint, back and the shoulder girdle. This helps you get more toned muscles.
  • HIIT elevates your metabolism for up to 48 hours after exercise.

Sprinters and gymnasts best represent the body forged by HIIT. They are lean but with great muscle tone, shape and remarkable definition.

Here are 2 HIIT routines that will help you tone up:

HIIT Workout A:  Treadmill Sprint Interval


Treadmill Sprint

Boost your metabolism with a treadmill sprint workout

Your basis for calculating your numbers is the maximum speed you can maintain for 20 seconds on the treadmill. If you can maintain a speed of 20 km/hr for 20 seconds, 20 km/hr shall be your baseline number.

Warm Up: 2 minutes walk + 3 minutes light jog + 2 minutes walk

Interval Training:

  • 400 meters x 65% Max Speed + 200 meters walk
  • 200 meters x 75% Max Speed + 100 meters walk
  • 200 meters x 75% Max Speed + 100 meters walk
  • 100 meters x 80% Max Speed + 50 meter walk
  • 100 meters x 85% Max Speed + 50 meters walk
  • 100 meters x 90% Max Speed + 50 meters walk
  • 100 meters x 95% Max Speed + 50 meters walk
  • 100 meters x 95% Max Speed + 50 meters walk

Warm Down: 10 minutes light walk

HIIT Workout B: Total Body Complex

Instructions: Do as many sets as you can for 10 minutes.

Warm Up:
High Knees x 1-3 minutes
Plank Lateral Crawls – 5 sets x 20 seconds

Interval Training:

The best time to do your cardio is on rest days. This way you can give it 100% effort and focus.

Cardio will not only keep you toned; it will contribute to balance health in combination with resistance training and healthy eating.