Regular cardio increases stamina and cardiovascular fitness over time, and comes with many health benefits. Exercising outdoors (particuarly in nature) has specific health benefits. However, using cardio machines also offers particular advantages:
- Controlled environment. Cardio machines like treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bikes allow you to work out in a controlled environment. You can tightly control all aspects of your workout such as speed, incline, and resistance levels to suit your fitness level and goals.
- Better control over intensity. You can easily maintain a consistent pace and intensity throughout your workout session.
- Heart rate monitoring. Many machines have built-in heart rate monitors, helping you track your cardiovascular effort.
- Weather proof. Regardless of weather conditions, you can use cardio machines indoors year-round.
- Time proof. You safely do a cardio workout when it’s dark. No need to worry about being seen by cars or personal safety.
- Lower impact. Cardio machines tend to be lower impact (e.g. treadmills tend to have greater shock absorption than running on the pavement and is easier on the joints) or are actually low-impact, such as the elliptical or step machine. This reduces stress on joints and minimizes the risk of injury.
- Targeted muscle engagement. Many cardio machines engage both upper and lower body muscles. For example, an elliptical with handles allows you to work your arms and legs simultaneously.