4 Ways to Jumpstart Your Cardio Routine

TKO jump rope product review

Cardio. What thought goes through your mind when you hear that word? We all know that cardio is important for our overall health, yet many of us drag our feet at the thought of it. Today, I have four ways to jumpstart your cardio routine to get the biggest bang for your buck. I want to help you find ways to both enjoy cardio and reap the most benefits!

Do you cringe at the thought of cardio? Check out these four ways to jumpstart your cardio routine, plus get a free HIIT workout you can do at home! Click through to read more. #fitness #workout

The Lowdown on Cardio

Aerobic exercise, aka “cardio”, is a crucial component to a healthy lifestyle for countless reasons. According to the CDC, the benefits of getting our heart pumping and our brow sweating, include:

  • Control your weight. You’ve heard the phrase “calories in, calories out” right? Cardio exercise can help you maintain or lose weight, depending on your goals, by burning excess calories (calories out).
  • Keeps your heart healthy. Just like strength training helps build and strengthen our muscles, cardio strengthens the most important muscle of all – our heart! Aerobic exercise also reduces our risk for a multitude of diseases, such as: cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
  • Strengthens your bones and muscles. We have heard time and time again that as we age, we lose bone density. Well guess what? Cardio helps negate this process by keeping our bones strong, which is also important for preventing hip fractures and helps manage the symptoms of arthritis. Time to think about the future, friends!
  • Improves our overall mood and mental health. Have you ever noticed that when you are exercising regularly, your thoughts are clearer, you feel more optimistic, and you may even be sleeping better? This is because when we exercise, endorphins are released, or, as I like to call them, “the feel good hormones.” This is also the reason why many reference “the runner’s high.” Once we know what it feels like, we can actually begin to crave that feeling.
  • Set ourselves up for success in old age. Here we go again thinking about the future! I know we would all like to think we are going to be invincible as we age and that we are going to live to 100, but truth is, most of us won’t. However, we can work to improve our quality of life for when we age by staying active now.

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So how much cardio should we be doing to reap all of the benefits above? The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise (or a combination of both). To make it easy to remember, think of it like this: 30 minutes of light to vigorous exercise 5 days a week. That doesn’t sound too bad, does it?

Now, let’s look at some ways to make aerobic exercise something to look forward to! Who knows, maybe you will experience that “runner’s high” and find yourself craving more.

4 Ways to Jumpstart Your Cardio Routine

Body by Simone Trampoline Cardio ClassCardio can be defined as “anything that makes your body move and burn calories.” So let’s look at some ways to get your body movin’!

Find a fun aerobic class to join. Remember when I was out in LA and participated in a trampoline cardio class? It was so much fun, we almost forgot how hard we were working. Find a class in your area that sounds fun, will get your heart pumping and your body moving. This could be a dance cardio class, spin class, or a class that combines strength and cardio, such as a boot camp class!

Grab a friend! Exercising is oftentimes more fun when you have a friend to do it with. Knowing that someone is counting on you will also give you the accountability and encouragement you need to follow through with your exercise program. I love meeting up with friends for runs or walks around the neighborhood because it’s a great way to spend time together and get my cardio in!

TKO jump rope product review

Jump it out. Literally. Looking to kick your cardio up a notch into that high-intensity range? Let me introduce you to a childhood friend, the jump rope. I remember in elementary school, we would regularly jump rope for time and see who could last the longest. It was so much fun that we didn’t look at is as exercise; it was a game!

Cardio can be fun as an adult, too. Did you know that just 15 minutes of jump roping burns 170 calories?! Thanks to my friends at Lipton Publicity Inc. and TKO, I was able to take a trip down memory lane and sweat it out throwback style.

TKO jump rope product review

The minute I started jumping (for joy), I noticed a difference in my grown-up jump rope. The handles were easy to grab and hold on to, versus some ropes where I feel as if they are going to slip right out of my hands! The other difference was that it didn’t get tangled… once. This was revolutionary to me since many of my memories of jump roping ended up in me being frustrated due to the rope getting tangled and twisted. I appreciated the weight of the PVC rope and the metal ball bearing feature that allowed for a smooth ride (errr, jump).

Because I had so much fun switching up my cardio routine with the jump rope, I’ve put together a fun HIIT workout for you that will get your heart pumping in no time! Click the button below to get your free download.

free hiit workout download

Join a community sports league. When one of my best friends moved to a new city, she joined the community tennis league to get social and stay active. I thought that was a genius idea! You don’t have to be an athlete to join, either. Community sports leagues are just as much about meeting new people and having fun as it is about the game.

There are many different types of leagues you can join, too, such as beach volleyball, softball, tennis, soccer, basketball and I would even count running groups if that’s your thing.

Sometimes, stepping outside of our comfort zone and trying new things is all it takes to start enjoying exercising more. And remember, in order for cardio to be an effective workout, you must get your heart rate elevated and challenge yourself!

*Lipton Publicity and TKO kindly sent me a Soft Grip Jump Rope for review. All opinions are my own. 

How do you like to fit cardio into your daily routine? Have you tried a fun cardio class recently? Share with me in the comment section below!

-Carly Paige

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64 Responses

    1. What a great idea! And yes, I agree with you – outside is better! Although in Florida this is only true certain months out of the year 😉

  1. Thanks for the awesome motivation! I just signed up to the Color Run in two weeks so this is exactly what I needed to get me moving!

    1. Yes! That’s my goal – do something every day to MOVE. It doesn’t have to be a super intense workout all of the time.

  2. Great post Carly! I feel like chasing a one-year-old all day provides me a ton of cardio (LOL). I love aerobic, high intensity cardio classes. It helps me stay motivated to keep pushing through when there are others there doing the same. 🙂 PS I need that jump rope!!

    1. I could totally see that, Chrissa! Yes, you do need that jumprope. I love it and the colors are so fun, too!

  3. Great post! I’m currently looking into getting a Y membership so that I can do some more cycling and maybe a little yoga too…in addition to the cardio/weight lifting I’ve been doing. I love mixing it up!

    1. That’s awesome, Marissa! Cardio is an extremely important part of a fitness routine to work out your heart! <3

    1. How fun! Boot camp classes are a great way to get in strength and cardio. Running and DVD workouts are a great way to switch it up!

    1. Danielle – I’m so glad my post was motivating for you! I love hearing that.You can reach your goals – just do something every day to move, drink a lot of water and eat whole, nutritious foods!

  4. Great post! I moved recently and have not been able to go to the gym anymore since it is so far out of the way so I resorted to running! I am not much of a runner and I do not really stick to it like I do when with working out! There are some great tips in here to start getting motivated and to do other workouts and not needing a gym! Thanks for sharing!

    1. You’re welcome Amanda! Sometimes, you just have to get a little creative to find ways to make it fun 🙂

  5. This post has such perfect timing with everyone posting their new goals for October. I just started my cardio back up and boy it made me feel so much better and so clear headed!

  6. Great information and tips! Lately I have been doing a TON of walking after work with my pup. I find that walking a dog is so relaxing and both of are getting in our good cardio. I am hoping to change up my cardio this winter and do some more swimming and cycling.

    1. I totally agree with you, Katie. Walking with my dog is one of my favorite parts of my day. And if I had your scenery, even more so! I love cycling – how fun!

  7. Awesome tips. I can attest to the jumping bit. When I’m watching TV, I do a bit of skipping in my basement so that I’m not a total couch potato, ha! Running is my favorite way to get in my cardio 🙂

    Alessandra | The PumpUp Blog

    1. What a great idea, Alessandra! I’m going to try that next time. I took a trampoline cardio class and it was SO MUCH FUN!

    1. Group classes are my go-to when I need something that’s going to hold me accountable in my fitness routine. All you have to do is show up and have fun!

    1. You’ve got this, Allison! The way to be successful is to find what’s enjoyable for YOU so that you stick with it 🙂

  8. I hate workout machines with a passion because I get so bored! However, I love taking classes because it gets me to try something different and doesn’t feel like a workout

    1. Ha! I totally feel you there, Amanda. I love taking classes, too, because it takes the work out of it of trying to figure out my routine and they are fun!

  9. Great ideas, Carly! I run up and down the stairs in my house for extra cardio. It’s a leg workout and cardio at the same time! I’d like to look into some classes at the gym too, so thanks for providing some good suggestions!

    1. Thanks, Joscelyn! If I had stairs, I would do that all day, too. Group classes are a great way to switch it up!

  10. Great tips!! I bought a jump rope last year and have barely used it! This post reminded me to pull it out and get jumping!

    1. Yes!! Seriously 15 minutes – boom. Calories burned. My downloadable workout is all about the jump rope!

  11. I love to jump rope but unfortunetly, Im awful at it! Im pretty sure my 5 year old self would be ashamed at how awful I am. I love to box so I mix in jump rope intervals but can only go a minute before I start getting tangled and messed up.

    1. Boxing sounds like fun! What a great workout. That’s been my experience, too, except with this jumprope, it was surprisingly easier!

    1. I love spinning!! I try and go at least once a week to switch up my cardio routine. Which reminds me, I haven’t been in a while so I need to get back to it!

    1. Thanks, Liz! You and I are in the same relationship then 🙂 Sometimes I dread it, but I’m always glad I did it afterwards!

  12. Jump it up – would be my favorite option.) I don’t really like taking classes, I prefer exercising at home. It has always been the most effective way for me. When I was exercising to get back in my pre-pregnancy shape, I was doing cardio a lot, but more in a form of a HIIT. I think it is more effective although much more challenging.

    1. I love hearing that you have found what works for you, Iryna! Group classes aren’t for everyone, and that’s okay. I love doing HIIT workouts, especially when I’m short on time.

  13. I love these tips! I cannot jump rope at all, just don’t have the coordination for it. I’d love to join a trampoline cardio class, that would be so much fun.

  14. This is super helpful! I am trying hard to get back into a workout routine and this has inspired me to actually get up and get moving 🙂

    1. Yay! I love hearing when my posts inspire people. You got this girl! You just have to do it and not think about it too hard 🙂

  15. Awesome tips! Cardio is such an important part of a healthy lifestyle. I train for half marathons and triathlons so I get my fair share of cardio, but when I’m not in my training season I like to do circuits using weights to keep my heart rate up and get a good muscle pump too!

    1. Thank you, Ariana! I would say get plenty of cardio 😉 I love doing circuits two – why not kill two birds with one stone, right?

    1. You’re welcome, Giselle! It can be hard to get motivated, but I’m always glad I did it afterwards.

  16. I really like how you mention keeping your heart healthy and your body strength up through cardio. I definitely need to start a cardio routine to help with these things. I don’t want to focus on my weight with my exercising, but it’s definitely a side effect I’m hoping to see!

    1. That’s great, Veronica! I think focusing on being healthy, first, is the way to go and then naturally, you will see added benefits because of it! Cardio and strength training are a great combination for keeping your heart and muscles strong 🙂

Hi! I’m Carly Paige, a culinary nutrition expert and chef who believes that healthy doesn’t have to be frustrating, boring or restrictive. I’m here to show you how through my Simply Swapped Method so that you can feel more energized and confident from within. You’ll find tips for focusing on nutrition in the kitchen, along with plant-powered, gluten-free recipes that proves healthy can be delicious.