It’s time for us to rejoice. The days of being all show and no go are finally over. However that doesn’t mean we’re going to get on the treadmill and slog away for hours on end, sacrificing our hard earned muscle for a small increase in fitness. In 5 Ways To Up Your Heart Rate Without the Treadmill! the exercises and techniques on this list will not only ramp up your heart rate and build your aerobic capacity but they may also help you add some needed muscle onto your frame at the same time.
1. Heavy bag
Ever seen a boxer on TV and wondered how they obtained such a great physique without touching weights? While the idea that boxers do not use weights is a bit of a misconception, the fact remains that much of their muscle is built through a combination of running, calisthenics and their secret weapon -the heavy bag. Not only is the heavy bag an excellent way for boxers to work on their combinations, even the average Joe can get a fantastic workout in 20 minutes by prioritising a 1 minute on 1 minute off method. Additionally, the impact of hitting the heavy bag also helps sculpt the forearms, abdominals, upper back whilst adding enviable roundness and fibre depth to those trademark athletic delts!
Not everyone can have a squat rack or treadmill in their living room but most people can take a walk down to their nearest dumpster and haul home a tire! Tires can be used in a number of different ways; you can tie a rope around it and drag it for distance or you can even buy a rubber sledge hammer (widely available in stores such as Argos or Amazon) and whack it for 1 minute, rest for 30 seconds and repeat, it’s also a fun way to de-stress! A personal favourite of mine is to set a timer for 10 minutes and flip the tire back and forth as many times as possible -this is a great real-world exercise that works your entire musculature in a natural way.
3. Rowing machine
Take a peep into gyms all around the country during rush hour and near enough every treadmill and stationary bike will be occupied. Cast your eyes to the corner of the gym floor however and you’ll more than likely see the rower collecting dust. Yet the rower is by far the most versatile of the traditional cardio machines. You may not think to class it in the same category as the treadmill, but you’d be wrong! Years of running on the treadmill can wreak havoc on the joints. The rowing machine has no such downside. A good milestone to aim for is 500m in under 1 min 40 secs. For 2000m anything between 7 mins 30 secs to 8 mins is more than respectable.
And you had better make sure that it’s outside! Regardless of what your fitness goals are sprinting can help you accomplish them. Trying to lose fat on your stomach a few months before your holiday? Sprint. Want to build an impressive set of glutes and hamstrings? Sprint. Sprinting remains one of the most criminally underused methods that nearly everyone can participate in. Start tentatively with 3 sets of 20m at the end of your workouts, twice a week and gradually work your way up through to 40m, 60m etc. You’ll be surprised by how much fitter you feel just by sprinting a few times a week.
After years out in the wilderness, sleds have made a storming comeback into fitness regimes all around the world. While they are not available in all gyms, if you are lucky enough have one at your disposal you should certainly make the most of it. Pushing or pulling a sled burns fat, increases muscular endurance and improves the enigmatic VO2 max (maximal oxygen uptake). Sleds are also a viable option for those who have injuries, particularly around the knee area.
So, there you have it. If you’re bored of the same old routine on the treadmill, try incorporating a few of these into your workouts and let us know @keepfitkingdom how you get on!