Some of the benefits of a real cardio workout are increased energy, lowered stress levels, and better sleep. In other words, positive side effects that carry on throughout the day. My spiritual version of cardio is also designed to benefit you throughout the day and not just during your Workout.
I take a daily devotional book and read that day’s entry. Right now I am reading through A Year With God but I have also used classics such as Streams in the Desert and My Utmost For His Highest. Many famous authors or people of the faith have meditation books taken from their writings. These include C.S. Lewis, A.W. Tozer, and Mother Theresa. My wife really enjoyed Voices of the Faithful. Find any Christian book or email service that provides daily meditations or devotionals and close your workout by reading that day’s entry and taking a few minutes to consider its thoughts and challenges.
Just as I let the Holy Spirit guide me to a prayer focus during the Strength section, the cardio/devotional book reading is designed to give me a thought or a challenge for the day. I take the theme and emphasis from the reading and intentionally think about it throughout the day. Perhaps it is short enough that I can return to it during the day and read it again. I particularly like ones that include an activity or exercise related to the reading. Through the exercise, I am not simply going through a mental activity but I am making the theme or emphasis tangible and providing some evidence as to my current spiritual state on the matter.
The bottom line is creating some intentional carry over from my Spiritual Enrichment Workout to the rest of the day. We have all had those experiences where we closed up our Bible or said Amen and that was the end of our time with God not just for that moment but for the rest of the day. Our mission is to make our spiritual workout a time where we are reminded of who God is, hear from him in his Word and through his Spirit, and to take what we have heard and discovered as a challenge for the rest of our day.