Anaerobic exercises: Bring your cardiovascular system to another level with fast paced cardio

Fast paced anaerobic exercises such as weight lifting and sprinting are intense, explosive activities preformed for short period of time. 

These type of workouts can be used to improve strength, speed and power, by increasing the number of fast twitch muscle fibers and size of skeletal muscles.

Although they are mostly used by bodybuilders and non-endurance athletes, these exercises also offer some unique benefits, when it comes  to improving heart function. 


Although aerobic "oxygen dependent" exercise is a starting point for a  strong heart and effective cardiovascular system, fast paced exercises can "jump start" heart rate to its max which is something you can never achieve with slow paced aerobic training.

This can improve cardiovascular system function via totally different mechanisms because of which it is important to combine both types of workouts for optimal results.

Also, after anaerobic training such as sprinting your heart rate stays elevated for several hours. This post-exercise effect causes positive adaptations in your cardiovascular system.

Also, first improve your cardio via some basic aerobic training, before stepping up the intensity with fast paced cardio exercises.


  • Weight-lifting
  • Lifting weights is the most basic anaerobic activity which you should do 2-3 times per week but it ain't the most effective anaerobic exercise when it comes to improving cardiovascular system. Nevertheless, weight lifting raises anabolic hormones which have anti-aging effect on the human body. This leads to decreased risk of heart disease, later in life. For optimal cardiovascular benefits, work in moderate to high rep range.

  • Rowing
  • You don't need to join any rowing club to include this activity into your schedule. Most gym's have some sort of rowing machine. This exercise is great because it causes positive anabolic response, improves cardiovascular endurance and muscular strength since it is a mix of aerobic and explosive training.

  • Sprinting
  • Sprinting is the best of all anaerobic exercises for your cardiovascular system. In one study it has been shown that few 30 second sprints are equal to an hour of aerobic training such as jogging.

    Sprinting also works your lower body and burns body fat even better than jogging. So if you want great legs, great physique and strong heart muscle, include sprinting into your aerobic training. If you really want to make it as hard as it gets, try hill sprints and see how you do. Don't say I didn't warn you.

  • Jumping
  • Here, I mean on explosive plyometrics jumps. This exercise is very demanding which causes your heart rate to raise close to its max, in short period of time, like during sprinting. These types of high intensity exercises are very effective in conditioning the cardiovascular system. Also, jumping is very easy to incorporate into your workouts whether you are working out, in a gym or outside. For added intensity you can do weighted plyometric jumps.


    Explosive, fast paced cardio exercises offer numerous benefits which aerobic exercises just don't have.

  • Builds muscles, burns fat and speeds up metabolism
  • Increases human growth hormone that rejuvenates your entire body and makes you look younger and more appealing
  • Improves heart function in way that aerobic exercise can't
  • Strengthens bones and improves joint function
  • Improves your physical health and mental well being
  • Improves your immune system even better than aerobic training
  • Increases your lactic acid threshold and endurance
  • Removes toxins through perspiration and exercise induced lymph drainage
  • Increase of fast twitch muscle fibers as well as increase in strength, speed and power

    Fast paced cardio exercises are in a way a lot safer than aerobic workouts but there are still some issues to watch out for.

  • Serious injuries
  • Lifting heavy weights can cause severe injuries, especially if you preform them with poor technique and overestimate your strength. This shouldn't be your problem since you shouldn't lift heavy weights, due to its inferior benefits on the cardiovascular system. Low to moderate weight and mid to high rep range is most optimal for heart function, when it comes to weight training. 

  • Kidney problems
  • Because anaerobic exercises are very intense, your body requires a lot of nutrients in order to recuperate, especially protein. Some people consume too much protein and creatine which may lead to kidney problems, over time. This shouldn't be your problem since you are a heart-builder not a bodybuilder and therefore it is normal to assume that you are consuming adequate amount of nutrients and not excessive amounts of protein.

  • Overtraining
  • As with any training schedule you should take one to two days off per week, for your body to recover. Initially, it may take more than a day or two for muscle soreness to disappear and your body to heal. Also, limit your anaerobic training to 1 hour max, 45 minutes is even better, to avoid catabolic state.


    Up to three anaerobic training sessions per week are enough for you to harvest all the benefits from these type of workouts. Also, protein shake and healthy post-workout meal can help in recovery, after these kind of activities. 

    For optimal results, combine anaerobic exercises with slow paced cardioYou can do one day of anaerobic training following by one day of aerobics or you can include sprinting into your jogging days for one-two punch.

    By combining these two types of exercises you can greatly improve the strength and efficiency of your heart muscle, than you could ever achieve with just one workout method.

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