The equation to losing weight is simple: burn more calories than you consume. However, this is easier said than done, and there’s no way you will meet your weight loss goal if you don’t exercise (Which type of exercises you do, while important, is a secondary thing; the most important step is to exercise regularly, 40-50 minutes at least thrice a week).
That being said, you do not need to spend endless hours in the gym to fit into clothes you’ve not worn in years. Each of the six exercises listed here allows you to burn 800 calories a day in less than an hour! In short, you’ll definitely stand a good chance to reach your fitness goal if you do these exercises.
Before we take a look at these exercises, some important things you must keep in mind are:
Spot toning does not work. It is not that spot training may work for some people and not for other: the truth is that it is equally ineffective for everyone. Doing endless crunches will not turn a fat tummy into a flat one.
- Eat right. You will not get your desired result from your exercise regime if you do not watch what you eat. At the very least, stop drinking sugar-sweetened beverages completely, cut down on your intake of processed foods, and eat more protein, fiber, healthy fats, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
- Get adequate sleep. Lack of sleep not only affects your performance but over a period of time, can increase the risk of several health conditions.
- Start slow. Consult your doctor if you have an underlying health condition or have not been exercising for a long period of time prior to today.
- Calories burned are usually not an exact measurement. Your calorie expenditure depends on your age, heart rate and body weight among other things. The following formula is quite accurate in predicting the exact calories you burn:
Men = [(0.2017 x Age) + (0.6309 x Heart Rate) — (0.09036 x Weight) — 55.0969] x Time / 4.184
Women = [(0.074 x Age) + (0.4472 x Heart Rate) — (0.05741 x Weight) — 20.4022] x Time / 4.184
1. Treadmill Intervals
Interval training, involving alternate cycles of high intensity and moderate intensity, has three main advantages over exercising at a steady rate:
- It allows you to burn more calories
- It allows you burn calories even after you have exercised
- It is not monotonous like steady-paced workouts
There are many interval training workouts available online for free and you can also create one for yourself. The basic principle is to run at 85 to 90 percent of your maximum speed for some time and then slow down to moderate speed for the same time or 1.5 times of the time spend running at high intensity.
You do not really need to run faster to run close to your maximum speed, although that is the most preferred way. For example, you can increase the incline on the treadmill machine to get your heart rate up while maintaining the same pace.
Most exercises such as running (even on a treadmill at zero inclines) exerts intense pressure on your joints and thus is not recommended for someone with joint-related issues. Swimming, on the other hand, is equally physically demanding but places less stress on our joints
Consider swimming as an alternative exercise if you have joint-related problems. Having said that, swimming is generally a good choice of a workout as you can burn 800 calories or more in 45 to 60 minutes. Alternate between breaststroke and freestyle, and when you feel like taking a small break, do breaststroke till you catch your breath back.
3. Cycling Sprints
No other exercise is as effective as cycling when it comes to building leg muscles and toning the butt. Cycling increases the heart rate steadily, ensuring that you burn a lot of calories in a short period of time. In fact, one can burn close to 1,000 calories in an hour by cycling at 16 mph to 19 mph. You can also consider interval sprinting as hard as you can for a minute every few minutes to push yourself further and increase the heart rate.
4. Boxing Workouts
Boxers have a ripped body, and the reason is their training. Try the following boxer workout. (You should do it only if you are decently fit. If you are exercising after a long time, do less strenuous exercise programs before attempting this one.)
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Strike, punch, and kick a boxing box as hard and fast you can for two minutes without any break. Rest for no more than 30 seconds. Repeat the sequence 11 times. Now take a skipping rope and jump continuously for no less than 45 seconds, followed by a short break of 30 seconds. Do this sequence for 19 more times. If you can complete this cycle, you are on your way to having a boxer’s body.
5. Cardio/Weight Classes
As the name suggests, you are required to do aerobic movements along with barbells or dumbbells or weight equipment. Such classes give you a total body workout. You work not only your cardiovascular system but also your muscles. As these classes are led by an instructor and conducted in a group, you will not feel bored for the entire duration of this workout. In fact, you may be motivated by others in your class!
6. Compound Power Workout
In this workout, heavy compound lifts such as squats, dead lifts, etc. are combined with intensive cardio. This does two things:
- You burn a lot of calories because you don’t rest for the entire duration of the workout.
- You burn a lot of calories even after you have stopped exercising.
As this workout has an element of danger, make sure you receive appropriate training or train under a certified trainer who is there to monitor your exercises and assist you when you get into trouble.