Cardio Is Awesome, But It Has A Dark Side Too

Image by: Chris Hunkeler
By Kurt Garrity

Aerobic workouts are part of the foundation of many fitness regimens. But unless your name is Richard Simmons or you just wrapped up a super-terrific Jazzercise class – meaning, a man – you refer to these workouts as cardio.

See how you suddenly started paying more attention when the word cardio was mentioned. Cardio is cool.

We’re talking running, bicycling, intervals, skiing, racquetball or stomping the step stairs. Even vigorous house chores technically count as cardio, but here, we’re talking about working out or participating in a sport … basically, getting hot and sweaty in expensive athletic clothing.

The point of cardio is to keep moving; exerting energy while bending, stretching, walking, etc., working your body systems to keep them in peak operating condition. And you from getting winded walking up three flights of stairs.

It Even Sounds Exotic … Cardio

OK, so we all do it and love to pronounce the word, but is it good for us? Yes. It’s pretty awesome, actually. Cardio exercise works the heart, lungs, muscles and circulation system, as well as stimulates mental health, burns off fat in the body and helps keep muscle lean.

Most doctors and health experts would suggest that all healthy adults should do at least some form of cardio on a regular basis. It’s pretty universally loved.

But is cardio bad for us in any way? Is there something that they are not telling us? We did some research and were a little surprised at what we found. Cardio does have a dark side.

You Will Get Fatter & Older

You can’t fight science, dude. The cumulative effects of cardio raises the levels or cortisol in the system.  That leads to visceral fat being stored in places like your belly. And having that extra v-fat around your midsection makes you age that much faster. Who knew.

Small Ball

Here’s something your probably didn’t want to hear – frequent cardio workouts may shrink your junk and drop your testosterone levels. Yikes – two balls and a strike. That’s right guys, all that stress you put on your body during that workout is actually working against you in the pants department.

Woman: “It’s so small.”

Man: “I do a lot of cardio.”