Be Cardio Smart

Be Cardio Smart and Optimize Strength, Mass & Fat Loss

By Charles Staley, B.Sc, MSS
Director of Staley Training Systems

Typical guys like to lift big weights and consider anything over 3 repetitions to be "endurance" training. Some of them can bench press a Buick, yet they get winded when bending over to tie their shoes.

We all do things we LIKE to do, but the most successful people also do what they NEED to do. If you’re the latter, listen up. I’ve got tons of fun and challenging cardio workouts that will help you lose fat without losing your strength or muscle.

Cardio Smart - Why Cardio is Needed

Don’t think that cardio will turn you into an estrogen-soaked shell of your former self. Many guys use this as an excuse to avoid doing cardio. However, the fact is that the benefits of being cardio smart are too important to ignore. They include:

cardio smart,

  • Improved Cardiovascular Health - This may not sound too exciting, but a heart attack won’t help you lift bigger weights, right?

    Good health is the foundation for everything, including weightlifting.

  • Fat Loss - If I haven’t convinced you with the above health argument, then this benefit should get your attention.

    It is possible to get lean by weightlifting alone, but it’s much easier if you add smart cardio to your workouts.

    Cardio workouts contrubite to creating a bigger energy deficit, elevating your metabolism and they initiate the secretion process of key fat-mobilizing hormones.

  • Active Recovery - Science has proven that ANY form of "contrasting" stress will promote faster recovery from your primary training activity. For guys that mostly lift weights, that means doing cardio. If you have tried this before and it didn’t work, it’s probably because you failed to properly integrate the cardio into your existing weightlifting program.
  • Injury Prevention - Cardio exercise utilizes joints, increases your blood flow to tissues and improves overall functioning.
  • Everyday Function - There are important everyday functions that require you to be able to exert maximum force for more than only 1 to 2 seconds. Things like walking on the street, playing with your kids, taking a shower, carrying your shopping bags, you get the picture.

cardio smart,

Cardio Smart - 4 Principles of Effective Cardio Training

Here's a few general principles that make your cardio sessions more fun and rewarding:

  1. Variation Prevents Injury, Boredom and Dropout

    Here’s an analogy that I use with my athletes: unfurl a metal paper clip into a straight piece of wire and then bend it back and forth a few times. If you keep bending it back and forth, eventually you’ll break it. Think of your body in that way.

    There’s absolutely no need to use only ONE single activity (such as running or biking) for your cardio workouts. Your heart, lungs and circulatory system may not know what activity is taking place - but your joints do. If you do running as part of all your cardio workouts, your knees and feet will take a beating. However, if you distribute your cardio workouts among 2 to 3 different activities (running, swimming, cycling) you’ll avoid overuse injury and you’ll have much more fun.

  2. Quality Comes Before Quantity

    Everyone pays lip service to this basic principle, but few will actually employ it! Make sure that your exercise technique is consistent all the time. A quality performance is usually a pain-free performance. If you experience elbow pain during a swim, change gears until you figure out what’s wrong.

  3. Challenge Yourself & Have Fun

    I have a neighbor who is both fascinated and disturbed by my devotion and dedication to physical fitness and training. He often walks past my garage while I’m weightlifting and says things like: "Better you than me" or other things to that effect. I simply respond that I train because I love it.

    My point is that if you can’t find fun in your training, you’ll never last. Thus, if you really hate cardio, you will need to play some games with yourself to get in the mood for cardio. The best way to do this is to keep challenging yourself. Keep a training journal and record your personal records (PR's) for everything you do. This will add purpose and excitement to your training sessions.

  4. No Fuss Gets the Job Done

    One of the main reasons that people find exercising to be tedious is because of the pre-workout preparations. These are: getting dressed in workout gear, waiting for optimal weather conditions, taking pre-workout supplements to name just a few.

    To get around this, try to adopt a "no prep" attitude. Don’t worry too much about your hair, or if it’s raining out, or if you’ll be sweaty at the grocery store afterwards.

    People tell me they dread even the thought of doing cardio, but once they start doing it, they think it’s really not so bad. Thus, try to minimize pre-workout gyrations and just get out and do it!

  5. For more information on how to be cardio smart and to get loads of fun cardio training programs visit the website below.


    cardio smart, About the Author

    Charles Staley is a renowned, highly-sought after strength and performance coach whos colleagues call an iconoclast, a visionary and rule-breaker.

    His clients call him “The Secret Weapon” because of his ability to see what other coaches do not. Charles, however, calls himself a “geek” who struggled in Phys Ed class allthroughout school.

    Whatever you call him, Charles’ methods are ahead of their time and quickly produce results.

    Visit Charles' site and grab 5 FREE videos that will show you how to literally FORCE your body to build muscle, lose fat and gain strength and be cardio smart with "Escalating Density Training".

    EDT is Charles' revolutionary, time-saving approach to lifting that focuses on performance NOT pain.


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