How long should cardio workouts be

Whether you are interested in doing ellipse, swimming, running, or something in between, here is how much time you should spend on your cardio workouts and how different cardio workout lengths can benefit you.

How long should cardio workouts be?

Your fitness level and goals depend on how much time you spend on cardio. It would be best to do 30 minutes of cardio about five days a week, or 150 minutes a week. But training longer or shorter than that may be better for you based on what you are trying to achieve.

There is no recipe for the perfect fitness training length. Break it up and exercise five minutes here, five there, then ten on a clip, until you are comfortable with 30 minutes straight. Do not force yourself to work harder or longer than you are comfortable. An athlete may demand more, or none, if they take a day off after a heavy resistance workout. 

Below you can find out how much time spent on cardio can work best.

Ten minutes: If you are new to exercise, recovering from injury, or over 60, 10 minutes of cardio is the perfect starting point to get your body used to the movement. A 10-minute walk or jog can help you clear your mind and loosen up your body. Ten minutes of exercise can also be an ideal amount to combine with a strength training session so that you can get your heart rate up while you still have time left over to pump iron. Check with your GP before starting an exercise program if you are recovering from an injury.

Twenty minutes: If 10 minutes feels feasible, why not increase the ante and make it 20. The extra 10 minutes of cardio can help your body begin to build endurance but will not overload your muscles. Twenty minutes is enough time for a challenging but fast workout, like a HIIT.

Thirty minutes: Spending half an hour on cardio several times a week is ideal for building endurance. A 30-minute walk gets your blood flowing, or try a half-hour virtual workout. In any case, it is a long time to challenge your body without exaggerating it, as long as you have worked your way up to perform 30 minutes of exercise safely.

Forty-five minutes: If you choose cardio with higher intensity or more effect, such as running, 45 minutes of training is best for those who already have a solid background in endurance training. Longer cardio workouts like this can help maintain a foundation for good cardio and muscle endurance, but be sure to work your way up to it to avoid overuse or injury. Longer sessions like this are ideal for low-power activities, such as walking or hiking. Just make sure you alternate cardio with cross-training to avoid overdoing it: For example, if you are a runner, choose activities that have a more negligible effect on your days off to give your joints a rest from knocking on the sidewalk.

An Hour: If you are an athlete or otherwise have a strong background in endurance training, an hour of cardio training may be the perfect place to maintain and continue to build endurance and strength. Balance these long workouts with cross-training to keep your body overall safe and robust.

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