7 Effective Cardio Workouts To Do at the Gym

7 Effective Cardio Workouts To Do at the Gym

Posted by ZOZOFIT TEAM on

Discover exercises for amazing cardio workouts at the gym. Learn pro tips to get more burn for your hard work and to spice up your workout.

Going to the gym has definite advantages for fitness, such as access to a larger range of exercise machines than you have at home. What are the best cardio workouts at the gym? The list of calorie-burning superstars may surprise you, including dancing, rowing and swimming.

Cardio workouts — the same thing as aerobic exercise — are all about getting your blood pumping. This type of workout elevates your beats per minute to between 65% and 95% of your maximum heart rate. What are some moderate- and vigorous-intensity cardio workouts at the gym to get you in the zone?

How Can You Find the Best Cardio Workouts at the Gym?

The truth is that any type of exercise that helps you reach your target heart rate can be fantastic cardio, from swimming to basketball. The workout you choose depends on your overall fitness goals and physical condition.

To find your ideal cardio workout for the gym, focus on the following factors:

  • Low-impact versus high-impact activities: If you have tender joints or you’re recovering from an injury, choose low-impact exercises that give your heart a workout without straining your body.
  • Exercise intensity: Low- or moderate-intensity exercises can help you build up your endurance, which is great if you’re just getting started.
  • Weight-loss goals: If you’re looking to maximize your fat burning, you may want to follow a high-intensity interval training workout that alternatives between vigorous and light activities.
  • Muscle-building objectives: You can perform cardio fitness and target specific muscle groups at the same time, such as working on strengthening your lower body muscles to support vein health.
  • Mood benefits: If you’re looking at cardio as a way to release stress and enjoy the positive flow of endorphins, pick whole-body workouts that energize you, such as dance classes.

There’s no right or wrong way to approach cardio. You have plenty of flexibility for switching up your routine and choosing exercises you enjoy — as long as they’re helping you reach your target heart rate effectively.

What Are Good Cardio Workouts at the Gym for Overall Body Performance?

The gym is an ideal place to get in shape. With the wide variety of equipment available, it’s relatively easy to build your endurance, improve your muscle tone and give your whole body a great workout. Try the following cardio-focused activitiest on for size.

1. Walking or Running on a Treadmill

Treadmills are one of the most versatile pieces of equipment at the gym. If you need to do low-impact cardio, you can stick to brisk walking. Jogging on a treadmill boosts your heart rate like no tomorrow. As your body adapts to the challenge, either exercise longer or increase the treadmill’s incline.

2. Using an Elliptical Machine or Cross-Trainer

Both of these machines provide a full-body workout that’s similar to running but without the joint impact. Cross trainers have moving arms that you can push and pull to work your arms and abs. Elliptical machines often let you adjust the lower-body resistance level to push your legs more.

3. Rowing

Rowing provides many advantages when it comes to cardio workouts at the gym:

  • Full-body exercise: This machine works your calves, glutes, hamstrings, core muscles, biceps, tris, lats, back muscles and more.
  • Speed control: When rowing, you’re in complete control of your exercise intensity, making this a perfect machine for HIIT workouts.
  • Recovery options: You can even use a rowing machine for muscle recovery and light cardio on your off days.
  • No weights: Rowing only involves pushing and pulling, not lifting body weight or free weights, so it’s especially good if you’re sore or have tender joints.

The rowing machine quickly becomes the cardio workout favorite for many a gym-goer. If you see one open, make a beeline to it several times a week.

4. Cycling

Riding an indoor bike doesn’t exercise your upper body, but for kicking your heart rate into high gear, this machine is king. Being able to adjust your desired resistance makes it easy to hit your target heart rate and keep it there for a long time.

You can also use a stationary bike for HIIT workouts. Alternate between pushing yourself hard for 20-30 seconds and cooling off with gentle pedaling for 10 seconds.

5. Circuit Training

Cardio workouts at the gym can be a lot of fun with circuit training. This type of workout involves taking on up to 10 different exercise machines around the gym, one at a time.

Usually, you’re looking at a few minutes per station and 10-25 reps. In total, circuit training takes about 30-45 minutes.

One of the best things about running circuits is that you give each muscle group a short but sweet workout. For example, you may start on a stair machine, do biceps curls, get in some leg presses and head over to the pulldown machine for your triceps.

6. Burst Exercises

Burst workouts are similar to HIIT, but they involve instant movements that put your agility, fitness level, breathing and muscle strength to the test. Check out a few examples:

  • Jumping jacks or jumping ropes
  • Cycling sprints
  • High-knee running
  • Burpees
  • Competitive basketball, squash or tennis matches

Some gym aerobics classes also incorporate elements of burst training, such as dance fitness, kettlebell exercises, step routines and battle rope workouts.

7. Swimming

When you think of good cardio workouts at the gym, swimming probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. In reality, going for a swim is one of the best low-impact, whole-body options for cardio. You can do laps in the pool as fast or slow as you want, providing benefits for endurance, strength training and fat-burning at the same time.

Which Cardio Workouts at the Gym Burn the Most Calories?  

Burning calories is a good goal if you’re trying to lose weight. Some types of cardio exercises deliver more bang for your buck. In order, they are:

  • Running hard: Over 800 calories
  • Circuit training: About 600 calories
  • Burst training (e.g., jumping rope): Over 550 calories
  • Cycling: 520 calories
  • Rowing: 520 calories
  • Gym aerobics classes: About 500 calories
  • Swimming: 490 calories

These numbers are estimations for a person who weighs about 160 pounds. You may also get different results depending on your intensity level.

How Can You Make Cardio Workouts at the Gym More Effective?

If you want better fat-burning and strength gains, create a personalized exercise routine. Your body may respond better to specific exercises, or certain workouts may keep you motivated better. Use ZOZOFIT to track your results after different types of cardio workouts at the gym. Then, you can put together a phenomenal fitness plan based on your body’s needs.

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