We know cardio is good for us. We also know it can be soul-destroying to watch that timer tick … tock … second … by … second … ever … so …slowly. These five tricks will help you enjoy your session more.
1. ‘Hide’ the timer or cover it with your gym towel. It’s a proven scientific fact* that, in the same way a watched pot of water never boils, a watched clock slows down to a snail’s pace.
2. Many gyms around the country have an ‘upstairs’ cardio area (with treadmills, cross-trainers and bikes) that overlooks the pool. Some say it’s about maximising the available space. We say it’s so you can check out the hotties in Speedos doing laps in the water.
3. Create a playlist of your eight favourite upbeat tracks – stuff you can sing to, stuff you want to dance to and stuff you’d like to learn the words to. Eight songs x four minutes = your workout will be over before you know it. (You might want to keep the singing down to a whisper at the gym, though.)
4. Break up the session into five-minute intervals: two minutes of walking, three minutes of jogging; four minutes of walking, one minute of jogging. It’s up to you how you structure it – but you’ll feel less bored if you vary your pace.
5. It’s summer, so take it outside. There’s probably a trail, a beach, a reservoir, a park or a hill where you live, which will provide a break from the monotony of a treadmill. Better yet, talk a friend into joining you – it’ll give you a chance to catch up while you tone up!
* Okay, so it isn’t a proven scientific fact. But it should be.