Whether you play sports, like to exercise, or just want to feel more energized throughout the day, endurance is key. Endurance, or “conditioning,” is your ability to perform intense physical activity for a certain period of time. People who lack stamina may be fine for a minute or two, but they “burn out” quickly. However, very enduring people can go there all day. That’s why we’ve put together four must-do exercises that will help you increase your endurance.
If you don’t know where to start to increase your stamina, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for the best recommended ways to build incredible stamina so you can handle whatever life throws at you. And then don’t miss what a daily habit of strength training does to your body after 50.
Long-duration endurance training is the most fundamental way to develop conditioning, whatever your sport or hobby. It improves your aerobic system, which provides energy during low-intensity exercise and helps you recover during high-intensity activity. According to the American Heart Association, engaging in endurance activity also ensures that your circulatory system, lungs, and heart stay healthy.
To do this form of exercise correctly, aim for a heart rate between 135 and 150 bpm for 30 to 60 minutes several times a week. Methods don’t matter, so feel free to jog, bike, jump rope, or even do a mobility exercise circuit.
For virtually every sport, endurance comes down to lower body endurance. To create bulletproof and resilient legs, you need to build muscle, not just rely on cardio. That’s where goblet squats come in. They make your legs explode, and because you’re carrying the weight, you’re also doing isometric work for your upper body so you can build endurance as well.
Grasp the end of a dumbbell with both hands and hold it by your chest with your elbows below. Stand shoulder-width apart with your toes slightly apart. Begin the movement by sitting back and spreading your knees. Descend below parallel while keeping your lower back flat. At the bottom, cross your heels and keep your knees apart.
Do 10 to 15 reps for at least three sets. Descend slowly for 2 seconds and ascend for 2 seconds.
For developing high-intensity endurance, mountaineers are unbeatable. They push your heart rate to the max and make your legs work like crazy. Plus, because you’ll be in the push-up position, you’ll also be building stamina there, which doesn’t hurt.
Place both feet on a sliding board or on separate sliding discs. Get into a push-up position. Keep your core tight and run as fast as you can on the slide board while keeping your head high and hips low. Do this for 20 seconds, rest for 40 seconds and repeat.
Typically, “gym strength” only lasts for a few seconds, which is how long a set lasts. But there is also “farmer’s strength”, which refers to the ability to do heavy work all day. (Now that’s real stamina!)
To build that kind of all-day strength, look no further than the aptly named Farmer’s Carry. It builds your whole body endurance, increases your grip strength and improves your cardiovascular system.
Take a heavy dumbbell in both hands, keep your chest up and your shoulder blades tight, and walk 30 yards. Rest and repeat.
Anthony J. Yeung
Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS, is a fitness expert featured in Esquire, GQ, and Men’s Health and the founder of GroomBuilder, the destination for men who want to transform their bodies for their weddings. Join the free 5-day course to burn fat and build muscle for the big day! Learn more about Anthony
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