30-Minute Cardio Workout To Blast Fat

Nov 8, 2016 //

Can you speed up your metabolism and burn fat, without spending hours on the treadmill?

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The answer is a resounding “yes” — if you work hard. In just 30 minutes, you can torch serious calories by using high-intensity interval training to maximize your calorie burn during (and after) your workout.

Here’s how it works: Interval training, a.k.a. alternating periods of intense activities with short, recovery periods, can produce the same results of longer workouts in less time.

These cardio movements will not only get your heart rate up, but they’ll also strengthen and tone muscles. Perform each of the following for 30 seconds at your absolute highest, most intense effort possible. Follow each with a 60-second active recovery period of marching in place, walking on a treadmill or slowly cycling on a stationary bike.

Repeat the set three times and your cardio workout is complete.

Warm up for three to five minutes on a treadmill, stationary bike, elliptical, or by walking or marching in place. Then get started on these moves.

Jumping Jacks

The same jumping jacks you did as a kid can bring major benefits if you attack them interval-style. Jump your feet out from shoulder width to hip width apart as you slap your hands up and together overhead. Go as fast as possible for 30 seconds.

Take a 60-second active recovery of marching in place.


Burpees use just about every major muscle group and really get the heart pumping. Start in plank position, dropping to a push-up and lowering your chest to the floor. Push back up to a plank, and then hop your feet up toward your hands. From this crouched position, explode into an arms-up jump in the air. When your feet hit the ground, reach down with your hands and touch the ground, shooting your feet back into plank position. Do this for 30 seconds.

Take a 60-second active recovery of marching in place.

High Knees

More active than simply running in place, high knees are an effective interval exercise. As you run in place, lift your knees as high as you can as fast as you can, driving them up toward your chest. Pump your arms quickly and stay on the balls of your feet. Focus on speed and knee height. Do this for 30 seconds.

Take a 60-second active recovery of marching in place.

Jump Squats

A cardio move with serious lower body benefits, jump squats will tone and strengthen the lower body. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, and drive your hips backwards while you bend at the knees until legs are parallel and hip joints dip lower than your knees. Explode out of the squat, pushing the floor away with your heels and leaping up into the air. Land softly, and repeat. Focus on squatting with the correct form, and doing really explosive movements with your jump for 30 seconds.

Take a 60-second active recovery of marching in place.

Lateral Jumps

Adding additional side-to-side movement to a jump squat, lateral jumps require core stabilization and will improve balance and coordination. Lower into a squat position, and jump upward and sideways. Repeat, jumping up and to the other side. Focus on quickness and height as you jump back and forth from side to side for 30 seconds.

Take a 60-second active recovery of marching in place.


Walkouts, or inchworms, will tone and strengthen the muscles in your upper back, chest and shoulders. Begin with feet at hip-width, and hinge at the hips to place your hands on the floor (like in downward dog pose). Walk your hands forward into you’re in a push-up position, and then walk your feet forward to meet your hands, keeping your palms on the floor and bending your knees if you need to. Do as many walkouts as you can in 30 seconds.

Repeat the set two more times, then end your high-intensity cardio intervals with a three to five minute cool down.

When you engage in the high intensity exercises of your interval training, you shouldn’t be able to easily have a conversation with someone else, and you should be really looking forward to your rest period. This type of intense workout is best to do three times a week on average, and shouldn’t be done every day. Let your body rest in between workout days, or schedule strength training on those days and allow for one, true rest day.