What To Know About The 'Cozy Cardio' Trend TikTok Is Loving

Calling all self-care girlies: cozy cardio just entered the room. Similar to the popular hot girl walk on TikTok, the new cozy cardio trend is another form of exercise geared toward creating a healthy and sustainable form of movement. This trend began with a video posted by TikTok user Hope Zuckerbrow, which now boasts over 200K likes. In the clip, Zuckerbrow shared her mindful approach to exercise, which combines her go-to self-care activities with gentle cardio. For Zuckerbrow, this entails accompanying her 40-minute workout with ambient lighting, protein coffee, fluffy socks, and a comforting rom-com playing in the background.

"It's meant to take the pressure off," Zuckerbrow explains in another social media video going into detail regarding the trend. "It's meant to help you enjoy movement again." If you find that a traditional high-intensity workout regimen simply isn't compatible with your current goals or lifestyle, consider adopting a cozy cardio routine.

Does cozy cardio count as a workout?

Any form of movement that elevates your heart rate and gets your blood pumping qualifies as an effective workout. "The key lies in finding a balance between comfort and exertion to ensure that the workout contributes to improving cardiovascular health and overall fitness," Mike Hamlin, personal trainer, tells Health.

The purpose of the cozy cardio trend is to help people feel more comfortable with exercise, both mentally and physically. Once you have developed a sustainable habit, the next step should be to upgrade to a moderate-intensity workout. "Although the trend is called 'cozy cardio,' you can opt for any form of exercise, such as yoga, a full body workout, a dance routine, a quick HIIT workout, or even Pilates," explains fitness and nutrition expert Penny Weston to Women's Health.

At its core, the cozy cardio trend is really about moving your body in a way that helps relieve the mental and physical pressure of performing a workout. Keep in mind, however, that a workout is only as effective as the challenge. Eventually, your muscles adjust to a certain speed, incline, or weight. If you want to reach your fitness goals, continue to challenge yourself and upgrade your routine as you progress.

How to create your own cozy cardio routine

A typical cozy cardio workout will look different for each individual. For Hope Zuckerbrow, this involved setting up her physical environment in a way that produced a sense of safety and comfort. For others, this may not include candles, iced coffee, or LED lights. If you are not used to exercising, try a gentle 30-minute workout with a 10-minute warm-up. Set a pace that works your muscles without feeling too intimidating. You can even swap out a walking pad for a yoga mat and weights if you want to try other low-intensity exercises such as Pilates or yoga (per Sunny Health & Fitness). Once you decide on your preferred form of movement, design a comfortable and motivating space. Try dimming your lights or switching on a lamp to create a soft atmosphere. Next, decide between playing your comfort show or a soothing Spotify playlist. Another freeing aspect of this trend is the ability to show up to your workout however you like, whether in a robe and slippers or a matching yoga outfit. Remember, you have the freedom to tailor your workout to suit your needs and capacity on a day-to-day basis without worrying about any preconceived ideas about how a workout should be.

After all, Zuckerbrow strongly believes that exercise should not have to be a form of punishment but rather a form of "meditational self-love," according to her clip, and this should be at the forefront of any healthy lifestyle.