What are the best fat burning workouts to give you the results you’re looking for? Do you need rapid fat loss and a lean physique without having to spend hours doing endless cardio?
That’s a good question and the answer is going to run counter to the accepted wisdom.
I was always taught that to burn fat you needed to do moderate intensity cardio workouts – walking, jogging,cycling and so on – for prolonged periods of time, 30-60 minutes ideally.
Now workouts like these will help you to lose body fat as part of a weight loss or fitness program. But its not the best way to do it.
I don’t know about you, but I just don’t have the time or inclination! I don’t want to spend hours every week running mile after mile to keep my body fat levels in check.
I’ve a demanding career, a family…a life! Besides, there’s no getting away from it! I think cardio is boring!
So, if long, low intensity cardio isn’t the basis for the optimum fat burning workouts – what is then?
What are the Best Fat Burning Workouts?
OK, let’s quickly review the principles for an effective fat loss workout.
First off, you need three components:
- Firstly, a strength training workout to build and tone muscle
- Secondly, a cardio workout to improve your base aerobic fitness and burn fat
- Thirdly, a healthy diet to provide the nutrition needed to fuel your fitness and weight loss program
There should be no surprises there, or is it?
Strength training is important as it helps to build muscle. Muscle is responsible for most of the calories you burn each day, so the more muscle you have the higher your metabolism and the more calories and body fat you burn during the day and night.
Cardio done correctly can burn lots of calories and improves your aerobic fitness. The more aerobically fit you are, the harder you can train. Also, he more calories and fat you can burn at each workout and afterwards as you recover from the workout.
And as for healthy eating? You don’t really need me to answer that, do you…?
So, the best fat burning workouts incorporate some strength training and some cardio, combining both to burn fat and build muscle.
Now, I know what you’re thinking – I did say that you wouldn’t need to do hours of cardio. Or spend hours in the gym hitting the weight either, for that matter.
Nope, because the best fat burning workouts should be short, intense workouts that don’t need to be done more than three times a week.
So, how does that work, then?
Simple, here’s a suggested outline for the optimal fat burning and muscle building workout. These can be completed in no more than 45 minutes, three times a week:
- Strength training using weights, machines, your bodyweight or a combination of all three
- Supersets – training opposite body parts in the same set to save time and increase intensity. For instance doing a set of bench presses immediately followed by a set of lat pulldowns, followed by a minutes rest before repeating the two supersetted exercises for three sets in total. Choose three exercises per body part and you’ll work two body parts in half the time
- Directly work each body part once a week, eg chest and back on day 1, shoulders and arms on day 2 and legs on day 3
- High intensity interval training – or HIIT for short – using an exercise bike, treadmill, rowing machine, elliptical trainer or a run outside. Interval training enables you to burn 3-4 times as many calories in the same time as you would doing a low-moderate intensity cardio workout
Spend five minutes warming up and stretching, 15-20 minutes strength training, 20 minutes interval training and five minutes cooling down and stretching and your fat burning workout is done in around 45 minutes.
Do Fat Burning Workouts of this Type Work?
Now this way of working out isn’t easy. Quite the opposite, as to gain the maximum fat burning and muscle building benefits you need to workout at the highest intensity you can with minimal rests during the workout itself.
But the benefits from this kind of training are huge.
- You burn more calories during the workout itself
- Due to the intensity of the workout your metabolism is raised long after you’re done so you carry on burning more calories after the workout whilst recovering – much of it from body fat
- Your workouts are much shorter and have to be repeated less frequently each week, so you can more easily fit them into your busy schedule and still get a great workout that effectively burns fat and builds muscle
Convinced? If you are, then apply these principles to your fitness regime and see the difference these fat burning workouts make first hand – with results in a matter of weeks!
Wrapping it Up:
If you want some detailed workout routines to follow, then you may want to check out our review of Turbulence Training, a fitness and weight loss program ideally suited to busy people looking to optimize the limited time they have available to workout.