10 Best Workouts to Lose Weight and Burn Fat

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  • 30 Aug 2023
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If you're a frequent gym goer who overindulges during the holidays, you might be seeking for the quickest ways to burn off the additional layers you've accumulated around your waist.

At the start of each year, one of the most common questions I get from new customers is, "What are the best workouts to lose weight and burn fat?" And, given that you're reading this, you're probably wondering the same thing.

There is no "one-size-fits-all" answer to this topic, but there are strategies to increase the number of calories and fat you ingest while exercising.

In this article, I'll look at which types of exercise burn the most calories and why that might not matter for fat loss. I'll also provide you a framework of ten daily actions that will help you increase the amount of fat you burn (yes, even belly fat).

What Exercise Burns the Most Fat?

Before we get into the meat of the matter, let me dispel a myth: no activity will burn more belly fat. That's a sad reality, I know.

The metabolic impact of various types of exercise on the body varies. This means that some workouts burn more calories while you're doing them, while others burn fewer.

When it comes to pure calorie expenditure, the evidence is clear: some hobbies burn more calories than others. Weight training does not burn as much as cardio, but it has an afterburn impact. Implementing the HIIT method (which I'll describe how to accomplish for each of the activities I'll advise) is a typical trick for adding the afterburn impact to the most calorie-consuming aerobic exercises.

Unfortunately, if you're seeking for net fat loss, you may need to consider other aspects in addition to exercise (such as sleep, rest, nutrition, and stress management).

For the time being, I'll look at the most and least calorie-consuming types of exercise and show you how to make them even more calorie-consuming.

1. Jumping Rope

The burn:

667-990 calories/hour (if you’re jumping at 120 skips per minute)

The bonus burn:

As it turns out, this tiny rope is a serious fat burner. To exercise your arms and shoulders even more, try utilizing a weighted jump rope.

2. Running Up Hills/Stair Sprints

The burn:

639-946 calories/hour

The bonus burn:

You should sprint at maximum effort on stairs or a hill at a pace you can only maintain for around 20 seconds, followed by a recovery run at half the intensity of the sprint and double the time. The higher the burn, the harder you push yourself during those sprints. This is a sort of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), a well-known type of cardio training that burns more calories per minute than steady-state cardio.

3. Kickboxing

The burn:

582-864 calories/hour

The bonus burn:

Whether you're kicking it on your own or in class, keep the rest times between rounds of jabs and kicks as brief as possible. Aim for a 30-second break every 90 seconds of sparring. Follow the HIIT principle once more.

4. Cycling Intervals

The burn:

568-841 calories/hour

The bonus burn:

Riding at a prolonged high intensity will result in a bigger burn than a steady-state ride at a moderate intensity, but including high-intensity intervals throughout your training time will boost the afterburn even more.

5. Running

The burn:

566-839 calories/hour (10 min/mile)

The bonus burn:

After a steady run, you'll continue to burn more calories throughout the day. Add short bursts of sprints to your run to blaze more calories during and after your workout. To obtain the most afterburn, I propose a work-to-rest ratio of 2:1. For example, if you run for 60 seconds, you should stroll for 30 seconds.

6. Kettlebell Circuit

The burn:

554-822 calories/hour

The bonus burn:

A high-intensity interval training (HIIT) circuit using kettlebells can keep the afterburn going for 36 hours after you leave the gym. To achieve the optimum results, make sure you're working in a continuous circuit and without pausing to rest between moves. I propose alternating between upper- and lower-body motions to allow you to exercise for extended periods of time. Try kettlebell swings, kettlebell squats, and kettlebell push presses. After finishing the three motions, take a 15 to 20-second break.

7. Stationary Bike

The burn:

498-738 calories/hour (at a vigorous pace)

The bonus burn:

To maximize afterburn, begin with 10 seconds of vigorous cycling (100 RPMs or higher) followed by 50 seconds of rest. Then, do 15 seconds of sprints and 45 seconds of rest, followed by 20 seconds of sprints and 40 seconds of rest. Remember to increase the resistance as you continue.

8. Rowing Machine

The burn:

481-713 calories/hour (at 150 watts, which you can check on the machine)

The bonus burn:

Row in rapid, one-minute intervals (150 watts) and take 30- to 60-second active rest periods by alternating between squats, pushups, and planks for optimum calorie burn.

9. Stairs

The burn:

452-670 calories/hour (when going 77 steps/minute)

The bonus burn:

Whether you're using the StairMaster or sprinting steps across town like Rocky, stair climbing provides an excellent balance of aerobic and anaerobic exercise. Hold a dumbbell in each hand to stimulate your upper body as well.

10. Strength Training

The burn:

341-504 calories/hour

The bonus burn:

You'll boost your afterburn by straining your muscles to exhaustion with each set rather than stopping at a fixed rep range like 10 or 12. Focus on compound actions that use multiple muscular groups across multiple joints, such as deadlifts and overhead presses.

Weight training ranks last on the list, and you may be thinking whether cardio is better than weight training for weight loss. Let me respond to that.

Is Cardio Better Than Weight Training for Weight Loss?

Yes, if you want to lose weight, cardio will be more effective than weight training. Research from the University of Copenhagen, for example, looked at the effect of cycling to work versus going to the gym on weight loss in overweight adults.

The participants were separated into two groups: Group One was required to ride a 14-kilometer journey to work twice a day, while Group Two was asked to exercise at the gym five days a week for 35 to 55 minutes per session. Surprisingly, the group that cycled experienced the greatest amount of weight loss.

Is this to say that doing cardio five times a week will help you burn the most fat? No, not always.

The primary problem with focusing just on cardio while attempting to lose weight is that combining long sessions with a daily caloric deficit (eating fewer calories than we consume each day) results in muscle loss.

More muscle tissue has been linked to a variety of benefits such as increased thyroid function (which also boosts metabolism), improved blood sugar levels (which aid in fat loss), reduced stress levels (which contribute not only to health but also to fat loss), and improved energy (which makes you less likely to skip workouts or snack on comfort foods).

Your main concern at this time may be, "How do I maximize my calorie burn without losing muscle?"

The solution: combining weight training with HIIT cardio.

According to a new study conducted by Wake Forest University researchers, combining weight training with a low-calorie diet protects much-needed lean muscle mass that can be lost during aerobic workouts.

This research leads us to believe that a diversified strategy to exercise (including weights, HIIT, and regular cardio) is the best way to achieve healthy and rapid fat loss.

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