Originally Posted by rpmcduff
If you want to get the most out of your cardio I would suggest looking into HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). The calories burned during the workout are the same but the after burn affect (putting your body into a higher metabolic state) can burn up twice the fat of moderate cardio with the same length workout. In HIIT you go hard for a period (the High Intensity part) then easy for a period (the Interval). Most of what I have read indicate that a 1:2 ratio is the best. This could be 10 second sprint and 20 second walk or 30 second run and 1 minute walk. The key is to slow back down and get your heart rate down and be able to go hard again. In the beginning you may have to increase the ratio. I am currently running 30 seconds and walking 90 seconds so a 1:3 ratio. Workouts should not be more than about 20 minutes. The great thing is you can keep adjusting as you improve and you don't have to dedicate more and more time to your cardio.
I use about 2:1 for sprints but do 1min on 1min off for rowing. I have been trying to find out the calories for the after burn and whether some exercises are better than others. There doesn't seem to be a simple answer.
(I've posted similar on another thread so apologises if anyone is getting deja vu)