Onduo is here to help you find ways to add more exercise and activity to your life. Benefits include weight loss, improved mood, and stronger muscles!

Cardio ideas for all body types

it’s still a great time to start new habits. Perhaps you’ve been focusing on eating better or getting enough sleep. But how are you doing on the activity front? Have you found a form of cardio to get you through the heart of winter? If not, we’ve got you covered with our latest tips.

Fire up your heart rate with these favorite activities!

  • Try old school calisthenics. Don’t like fancy equipment or guided workouts? Create your own routine simply by doing reps of classic moves, such as jumping jacks, walking lunges, push-ups, squats, or sit-ups. You choose!
  • Kick butt with kickboxing. Work out your frustration and gain confidence at the same time. A punching bag isn’t always necessary, just a fighting spirit. Kickboxing also lets you progress at your own pace and modify as needed.
  • Bring your bike inside. If you love bicycling—a low-impact exercise that’s gentle on the joints—consider turning your bike into a stationary ride for the winter. This can be done with either a bike trainer or a roller bike stand.
  • Walk to your own beat. Similarly, if walking is your thing, there are also some winter sub-ins. For example, try marching in place or doing things like high knees, butt kicks, stepping side to side, or going up and down stairs.
  • Hit the dance floor. Figuratively speaking, that is. Dancing queens and kings may find it easiest to get their cardio from a booty-shaking workout. Discover the many types on YouTube—from hip hop to Latin dance to Bollywood.
  • See how far you’ve come. Stay motivated by logging your cardio activities in the Onduo app. Plus, if you carry your smartphone with you, the app will automatically count your daily steps.

Move and groove with our cardio playlists!

Woman in snow square

6 ways to keep moving in the winter

Yes, the weather outside may be frightful. But that’s no reason to let your exercise goals fall to the wayside—especially when we all need the physical and mental benefits more than ever.

Here are some ways to keep moving, even when the days are short and the temperature won’t stop dropping.

  • Embrace the snow. Live somewhere frosty? Try out snowshoeing or cross-country skiing, both of which burn major calories. Even just playing in the snow—not to mention shoveling it—gets the heart pumping.
  • Vary your workouts. Don’t despair if the gym’s closed. There’s no shortage of things you can do at home, from workout videos to YouTube fitness channels to exercise apps. Rotate through several to keep things fresh.
  • Get outside at lunch. Boost your mood and immunity with a midday walk. If you bundle up in layers, you may find that the colder air is not only invigorating, but you can also walk longer than if it were hot and humid.
  • Dance your heart out. Turn up the volume for 5 favorite songs, bust out some moves, and guess what—you’ve just gotten in 15 minutes of fun cardio. For more intensity, do jumping jacks or butt kicks during the chorus.
  • Wear exercise clothes. If you’re working remotely, here’s a great mental trick: put on workout or walking gear in the morning, and it’ll help ensure that you exercise. If you don’t, you’ll feel pretty sheepish at the end of the day.
  • Rethink your desk. Are you sitting all day? Consider putting a standing desk, treadmill desk, or bike desk on your wishlist. With TheFitDesk, you can even get a compact bike or elliptical that goes under your current desk.

The benefits of cardio

When you think of cardio, jogging may immediately come to mind. But cardio—short for cardiovascular training—is essentially any activity that increases your breathing and heart rate. For example, walking/hiking, bicycling, swimming, water aerobics, rowing, kickboxing, and jumping rope are all forms of cardio.

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate cardio exercise per week to improve your quality of life. That’s roughly 30 minutes 5 days a week, and the idea is not only to bring up your cardio fitness level, but also lower your health risks.

Here’s just a sampling of what regular cardio can do:

  • Burn calories and help control your appetite
  • Strengthen your heart as well as your muscles
  • Enhance your mood, thanks to the release of feel-good chemicals
  • Increase your stamina and endurance, so you don’t tire as quickly
  • Reduce arthritis pain and stiffness through joint movement
  • Improve your brain’s ability to reason, plan, and problem solve
  • Help prevent or manage high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes

Getting started with cardio is as simple as picking a favorite activity that gets your heart rate going and gradually increasing how long and how intensely you do it. How do you know when you’ve reached a “moderate” cardio level? Think of it as a 6 or 7 on a scale of 10. If you’re breathing fast and working hard, you’re on the right track!

Man plays basketball with young son

5 tips for getting moving

Some things don’t change, like the way exercise can help with your glucose control (and your sense of accomplishment). Here are some great ways to fit it in right now:

Rethink your old commute time. Pre-pandemic, did you spend time commuting every morning and evening? Why not use those slots for a head-clearing walk to start and end your workday?

Find virtual exercise buddies. Use video platforms to connect with friends and work out together. Not only does it make you accountable, but you can get in some catch-up time too.

Set a timer to get up and move. Program your phone or watch to prompt you to do things like jumping jacks, push-ups, or going up and down stairs.

Go online with your favorite trainers. Many are now offering virtual workouts that you can do from home with little or no equipment. Check social media for details.

Head outside for some fresh air. When you’re going stir-crazy, nothing feels better than a hike, jog, or bike ride. Note your state’s orders, wear a mask if around others, and keep up your social distancing.

Two women walking and laughing resized

6 easy ways to take more steps

You’ve probably heard about taking the stairs or parking at the far end of the lot. Once you’ve worked those in, what else can you try? Note your state’s orders, wear a mask if around others, and keep up your social distancing. Here are some ideas:

  • Turn any wait into a walk. Will it be 20 minutes before your outdoor table is ready? Walk around to pass the time.
  • Get moving during your TV time. Take advantage of commercial breaks—circle the sofa or go up and down the stairs until your show returns. Or keep that heart rate up and march in place while you watch.
  • Use the buddy system. Whether walking with a friend, your significant other, or your dog, it’s good to have someone who’s counting on you. Schedule a regular “date walk” with your favorite humans or four-legged friends.
  • Let us count your steps. Did you know the Onduo app will track your steps if you take your phone? Measuring—and then slowly upping—your steps can help you stay motivated, set and achieve goals, and learn about your body.
  • Change up the scenery. If you’re tired of your neighborhood, check out some new terrain, like a school track, a nearby park, or a nature trail. Or pretend you’re a tourist and take a tour of your town.
  • Create challenges. While you’re walking, try speeding up when you hit shady spots and slowing down in sunny stretches. It’s a fun way to push the pace and get your heart pumping. Get creative and make your own challenges!

Note: Before starting a new activity, consider talking to your healthcare provider to learn how much activity is right for you.