Best Cardio Bodyweight Exercise

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Like all muscles, your heart adapts to the demands placed on it. When you perform cardiovascular exercises regularly, your heart becomes stronger and more efficient at pumping blood to the organs that depend on a strong blood supply to function. When your heart is weak, its pumping ability diminishes, causing your organs to malfunction. Poor diet and lack of exercise are the primary reasons cardiovascular disease develops, and this potentially fatal disease can lead to high blood pressure and stroke. Building cardiovascular endurance dramatically decreases your risk of cardiovascular disease.

Weight Control

Cardiovascular endurance allows you to get the most out of your workouts, which helps you to keep your weight under control. If your heart is weak, you’ll only be able to exercise for a short time before getting tired. By building cardiovascular endurance, you’ll have the energy to exercise at peak levels for prolonged periods and will burn more calories during workouts. If you are new to exercising, build cardiovascular endurance slowly to prevent sudden cardiac events such as a heart attack. Begin at a slow-to-moderate pace for 20 to 30 minutes each day, and gradually increase the duration and intensity of your workout as your heart becomes stronger.

Disease Prevention

Cardiovascular exercise helps to prevent obesity, which lowers your risk of developing a variety of ailments. Visceral fat, which lies within your abdominal cavity and cushions your vital organs, is the cause of many diseases, including Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. Building cardiovascular endurance is the quickest way to get rid of visceral fat and avoid these and other preventable illnesses. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, being physically active also reduces your risk of developing breast cancer and prostate cancer — another important reason to get moving.

Psychological Benefits

Regular aerobic exercise can boost your mood, ease symptoms of anxiety and depression, reduce tension and promote relaxation, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that physical activities can also enhance your thinking and judgment skills and improve your quality of sleep. Having the energy and stamina to engage in physical activities and the ability to keep your weight under control will boost your confidence, which is also psychologically beneficial. Looking and feeling healthy also improves your overall outlook on life.

Exercise Examples

If you want to get your heart pumping and increase your lung capacity then cardio based body weight exercises are the answer. The more muscles your can use during an exercise the more demands on energy and the harder the lungs and heart have to work.

The following body weight cardio exercises require no equipment, they can be performed with your body-weight only.

Fast Mountain Climbers

An excellent introduction to body-weight cardio exercises. It is tough on the legs and the core muscles. Start in a push-up position and then alternate jumping one leg forward followed by the other between your hands. Make sure that both feet land at the same time. Work on your timing. Beginners can use feet sliders to reduce the resistance.

Squat Thrust

The squat-thrust takes the fast mountain climber to the next level. Rather than jumping and alternating legs you keep both legs together.Keep both feet together and knees between your elbows when jumping forward. When jumping back, brace your core muscles and don’t allow your hips to dip. This exercise will challenge your mobility, leg strength, cardio and abs. This exercise can be performed with feed sliders for beginners.


The burpee is very squat heavy and uses a lot of muscle mass. It elevates the heart rate quickly. Starting in a standing position sit down deep into the squat position and place your hands on the floor. Then jump both feet back and forwards just like the squat thrust. End by standing up and push the hips forwards. Always ensure that you finish standing tall with the buttocks tight.

Flamingo Burpee

Perform a regular Burpee except this time perform the complete exercise standing only on one leg. You will need to have good single leg strength for this, as well as strong calf muscles. In you suffer from calf strains or Achilles Tendon issues then this exercise should be avoided. Try to perform 10 flamingo blurgee’s on each leg.

High Knees

The high knee exercise is a powerful cardio exercise that gets the heart rate up fast. From a standing position sprint on the spot lifting the knees as high as possible. Use the arms at the same time to really pump the body and get momentum. Make sure that your calf muscles are nice and warm before performing this exercise. Try to perform this exercise for 20 seconds, followed by 10 burpees.