CARDIO Why it matters: Getting your heart pumping strengthens your ticker, decreases your risk of developing cardiovascular disease, releases endorphins and reduces stress. Exercise: Jumping rope Choose a soft or flexible surface to jump on, such as carpeting or a wood floor. To find the right rope length, step on the center of the rope and pull the ends up—the handles should come up to your armpits. Keep your knees soft, spine tall, abs pulled in and elbows by your waist. Gaze forward and begin bouncing with both feet—you only need to come up a couple of inches off the floor for the rope to pass under your toes. Jump as long as you can, then jog in place to recover before jumping again. How to tell you’re improving: You’ll be able to jump for longer periods and will need less time to recover. Aim for three minutes of jumping and one minute of jogging in place.