Beyond doubt, doing regular cardio-vascular training is the best way to burn fat, build stamina, and improve heart health. Only 20-60 minutes of cardio at least 2-3 times a week at 55-85% of your maximum heart rate (220 – your age) will help you achieve all these goals and more.

Aerobic fitness, according to many doctors, is the most important component of physical fitness. When your muscles need oxygen, your aerobic (cardiovascular) system must be able to efficiently deliver it to them. When your body has waste products that need to be expelled (carbon dioxide and metabolic wastes); your heart-lung complex must be up to the task. These two tasks are the basis of aerobic fitness.

Aerobic fitness burns body fat.  Engaging in aerobic exercise can burn up to one thousand calories an hour depending on the specific type and intensity of activity. As a result, individuals who want to reduce their body fat sensibly, instead of starving the weight off, have a positive, user-friendly option at their disposal.  A balanced program of aerobic training combined with good nutrition and regular resistance training to build and maintain muscle is a fool-proof formula to not only help you look fabulous but live longer as well.

The value and impact of aerobic fitness to the guy who works out extends beyond the boundaries of the workout room. Research indicates that for every hour you spend exercising aerobically, you extend your life by two hours.

Mentally and emotionally aerobic exercise can do wonders for you. Researchers show that individuals suffering from light to moderate depression who engage in aerobic exercise 15-30 minutes at least every other day, typically experience a dramatic improvement in their condition. Mental sharpness, better sleep patterns, as well as an improved self-image have also been reported and studied as wonderful fringe benefits of individuals who hit the cardio room.

From a medical-physiological point of view, cardiovascular training can provide the only real fountain of youth and good health to the human body. Aerobic exercise aids in preventing certain types of cancer. Studies show that men and women who exercise are less likely to get colon cancer. Research has also suggested that women who do not exercise have more than two and a half times the risk of developing cancer of the reproductive system and almost twice the chance of getting breast cancer.

Cardiovascular training reduces the risk of heart disease. The American Heart Association reports that non-exercisers have twice the risk of developing heart disease and heart attacks than individuals who, walk, jog, kick box, or hit the treadmill regularly. In addition, aerobic exercise is one of the few voluntary activities that is effective in lowering your LDL (bad cholesterol) and raising the level of HDL, the type of cholesterol that lowers your risk of heart disease.