How Much Cardio Do I Need To Lose Weight?


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    What Is Cardio?

    Cardio, an abbreviation for cardiovascular, refers to aerobic exercises. The term ‘aerobic’, in turn, means ‘with oxygen. Hence, cardiovascular exercises refer to those exercises which involve the movement of large muscles of hips, legs, and arms repeatedly and rhythmically. While performing these exercises, our heart rate increases and breathing becomes faster. It promotes the efficient utilization of the oxygen present in our blood.

    Cardio workouts may not yield the desired result in a week but can be very effective if practised with consistency.

    How Do Cardio Exercises Help In Losing Weight?

    Weight loss occurs by creating a calorie deficit. One can achieve it by burning more calories than one consumes. While some prefer to create this deficit strictly through dieting, the healthiest and efficient way is to combine a healthy and balanced diet with cardio and strength training.

    Trainers recommend regular cardio exercises to lose weight quickly. Doing cardio also prevents obesity and its side effects. Sixty minutes of cardio a day can help you lose weight without uneasiness, unlike most exercise routines like strength training. Depending upon personal endurance, you may choose to do cardio twice a day or increase its intensity to lose weight faster.

    Now, let’s read about a few cardio exercises to lose weight and find suitable ones.

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    Some Cardio For Beginners To Lose Weight

    • Running:

      Running is popular cardio to burn calories and lose weight. You can start by running at a moderate pace for 30 minutes a day on the track and then gradually increase it to more than an hour. While running on a treadmill, try to set the inclination at 2 to 3 % for best results.

    • Stair Climbing:

      Stair climbing is one of the most widely practised cardio exercises at home that can help lose weight quickly. A healthy diet behavior combined with stair climbing activity at your home can help you create a calorie deficit. Beginners can start by climbing 500 stairs steps a day and gradually increase the number of steps.

    • Jumping Rope:

      Jumping Rope is a fun way of burning a ton of calories while increasing foot speed and strengthening your foot muscles. It is also economical as all you need is a jumping rope. Like all other cardio activities, right gears like breathable clothes and comfortable shoes are essential while jumping ropes.

    An hour of any cardio exercise listed above, when done consistently, can undoubtedly help in effective and visible weight reduction. You can carry out your cardio routine from the comfort of your home too.

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    Cardio Exercises At Home

    There are several cardio exercises that we can perform at home to lose weight fast. We can segregate cardio exercises into basic cardio exercises and cardio exercises that need training. Jumping, running in place, squats are some basic cardio exercises, while dancing, planks, boxing would need training to perform.

    We can also choose the type of cardio exercise based on our gender. Here are some examples of cardio workouts for both genders.

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    Some Cardio Exercises For Men

    • Sprinting:

      In sprinting, you start by going down one flight of stairs and then climb back up. For the second set, you go down two flights of stairs and climb back again. You can keep increasing the flights after every set.

    • Jumping Jacks:

      Stand with the feet together and arms flat by the sides. Then raise the arms above the head, spread your feet and jump up. Revert to the original position, and repeat this step.

    • Box Step Ups:

      Start by standing in front of a sturdy box or any elevated platform. Keep the feet shoulder-width apart. Place the left leg on the box, and then follow this motion with the right leg. Stay for a few seconds and then revert to the original position.

    Some Cardio Exercises for Women

    • High Knees:

      Stand on a yoga mat, bring your elbows closer, place your arms at a 90-degree angle. Now lift your knees one by one, higher enough that they tap on your palms. Complete 20 repetitions in one round, rest for 30 seconds to 1 minute, and start the next round. Do three rounds in one session.

    • Jump Ropes:

      Stand on your yoga mat and jump for at least 20 skips in one round. Take a rest for 30 seconds to 1 minute and repeat the activity. Continue for three rounds in each routine.

    • Plank Get up:

      Start in a low plank position on the floor. Pick up your right forearm. Press through your palm to stretch your arm straight. Repeat this step with the left arm to come into a higher plank. Keep the hips leveled. Reverse this movement to revert to the original position. Do ten repeats of this in one session.

    Now that we know the basics of cardio exercises for both men and women, let’s understand the duration of the workout necessary to reduce weight.

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    How Much Cardio Is Required To Lose Weight Fast?

    It is advisable to spend at least 150 to 300 minutes per week performing a mix of moderate-intensity exercises to notice substantial changes in your body. If you work out every day, 30 to 45 minutes of cardio exercises will help you lose weight faster.

    However, if you work out on alternate days, an hour of cardio is sufficient to lose weight. Apart from that, it is also advisable to share details of your medical history, past injuries, and present fitness level with an expert and seek their professional advice before starting with a cardio regimen.


    Cardio exercise is an easy and effective way to lose weight sustainably. It does not require expensive equipment, and one can easily save exercises and training expenditure. There are activities for both – who love to work out outside and those who prefer exercising inside their homes.

    With consistency and a healthy eating plan, cardio exercises can help achieve weight loss goals for both men and women. Visit Oliva Skin & Hair Clinic to know more about a comprehensive and customized health program today!

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    About The Author

    Mrinal Pandit

    Mrinal Pandit

    Mrinal Pandit is a registered dietician, diabetic educator & counsellor. She has done her bachelor's from the University of Kolhapur in Food Technology Management. Post her bachelor's; she did her Masters in Health Sciences (Dietetics) from the reputed University of Pune. Mrinal believes that the key to leading a healthy life and wellbeing is to celebrate food and bodies. At Oliva Clinics, Mrinal is the chief nutritionist. She supervises our nutritional staff and helps establish policies and procedures, and provides administrative direction. Before joining Oliva Skin & Hair clinics, she was the chief dietician with Nephroplus.

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