Workout Tips

6 Ways to Sneak Cardio Into Your Workouts

No time for a cardio workout? No worries. These covert strategies will have you torching bodyfat without adding time to your workout.

4. Concept 2 Rower

This is another piece of equipment that has emerged as one of the best conditioning tools around. Rowing is fast and efficient at burning calories. You use the entire body, making it perfect for people with limited time.

Perform a 200-meter sprint (takes anywhere from 30-60 seconds) between exercises. Perform no more than 8-10 sprints or else your weight training may tend to diminish in quality due to the high demands of the rower.

5. Burpees

The best thing about the burpee is that you don't need any equipment. Simply drop down to the floor in front of you and go. They are also easy on the muscles and more taxing on the cardio so it won't hinder your weight training too much.

Perform 5-10 reps in between each set, striving for 75-150 total burpees in a single workout.

6. Jumping Jacks

We are going old school on this one. Another one of my favorites because it requires no equipment, jumping jacks hit the cardio without compromising strength too much and you can get a high amount of volume in a short amount of time.

Perform as many jumping jacks as you can in 30 seconds in between each weight training exercise.

kettlebell swing in gym

When To Do It

If building pure strength is your primary goal, I would limit the use of cardio between sets. In order to increase your strength you need to give yourself the proper amount of time in order for your central nervous system to recover.

If building muscle is your primary goal, perform these cardio moves in between sets on a less intense lifting day. For example, if you are lifting heavy on leg or back day, don't do too many “covert” cardio sets, if any. Maybe include them for a few sets at the end of a workout. On an arm day or shoulder day, include more sets of cardio.

If fat loss is your goal, include them in all of your workouts. Just be mindful of which cardio move(s) you use. For example, it may not be wise use burpees if your workout is targeting your chest since you will be performing a modified push-up with each burpee. Also stay away from the Airdyne bike on a heavy leg day. Instead, do some jumping jacks.

For all of these scenarios, allow yourself 20-30 seconds of rest after you perform the cardio exercise before performing the next set of weight training.


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