15 Fat Burning Exercises
First and foremost, weight loss can be obtained with a clean healthy diet. Diet only based weight loss can result in a loss of 1-2lbs/week. However, to increase the speed at which weight is lost it is necessary to incorporate an effective routine.
There are numerous forms of exercises available to the willing these days. From traditional (and historic) to the more scientifically based exercises (and workouts) from modern day sports scientists and specialist trainers. Specialists who are prepared to “think outside the box” and follow their scientific results instead of blindly following prescribed methods of losing weight through exercise – typically cardio or aerobic exercise!
But, not all exercises are created equal. There are exercises that require a low level of effort right through to high intensity exercises requiring a very focused and intense but short period of exercise.
Here is a list of 15 different types of exercise available for you to consider and try out (not in any particular order) –
- Martial Arts (Black Belt Wiki Lists 150 forms of Martial Arts) These vary from the typical forms of martial arts we generally think of – ancient oriental forms (Kung Fu, Karate, Muay Thai, Aikido, Ninjutsu etc to European forms and more modern interpretations /developements ie MMA, Wing Chung etc). Martial arts are a long term committment requiring extensive physical and skill training to master the individual moves and is therefore more of a ‘career’ sport than a fat burning exercise. Fat Burning Potential: Good (~6/10)
- High Intensity Interval Training (H.I.I.T). HIIT is a form of exercise based around an intense workout protocol with an interval of rest (or lower intensity exercise in place of the rest) utilising multiple muscle groups at once. HIIT is a rapid exercise program. As it’s name suggests it is an intense workout and the foundation for most of todays’ specific fat burning exercise programs. Fat Burning Potential: Great(~9/10)
- Crossfit. CrossFit is a strength and conditioning program consisting mainly of a mix of aerobic exercise, calisthenics (body weight exercises), and Olympic weightlifting. Cross Fit, Inc. describes its strength and conditioning program as “constantly varied functional movements executed at high intensity across broad time and modal domains,” with the stated goal of improving fitness. Cross Fit gyms use equipment from multiple disciplines, including barbells, dumbbells, gymnastics rings, pull-up bars, jump ropes, kettle bells, medicine balls, plyo boxes, resistance bands, rowing machines, and various mats. Cross Fit is focused on “constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movement,”drawing on categories and exercises such as these:
calisthenics, Olympic-style weightlifting, power-lifting, Strongman-type events, plyometrics, body weight exercises, indoor rowing, aerobic exercise, running, and swimming. Source : BlackBelt Wiki Crossfit, as you have just read, is primarily a cardio based strength workout and is not geared up for fat burning due to the generic nature typically requiring 1 hr sessions. Fat Burning Potential: Average (~6/10)
- Weight Training. Weight training is a common type of strength training for developing the strength and size of skeletal muscles. It utilizes the force of gravity in the form of weighted bars, dumbbells or weight stacks in order to oppose the force generated by muscle through concentric or eccentric contraction. Weight training uses a variety of specialized equipment to target specific muscle groups and types of movement.
Sports where strength training is central are bodybuilding, weightlifting, powerlifting, strongman, highland games, shot put, discus throw, and javelin throw. Many other sports use strength training as part of their training regime, notably; mixed martial arts, American football, wrestling, rugby football, track and field, rowing, lacrosse, basketball, baseball, and hockey. Strength training for other sports and physical activities is becoming increasingly popular. Source : Wikipedia/Weight Training Weight training can be time consuming and focuses on building muscle with low reps of high weights rather than burning fat. Fat Burning Potential : Average (~5/10)
- Strength Training. Strength training is a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to
induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, and size of skeletal muscles.
When properly performed, strength training can provide significant functional benefits and improvement in overall health and well-being, including increased bone, muscle, tendon and ligament strength and
toughness, improved joint function, reduced potential for injury,increased bone density, increased metabolism, increased fitness,improved cardiac function, and improved lipoprotein lipid profiles, including elevated HDL (“good”) cholesterol.Training commonly uses the technique of progressively increasing the force output of the muscle through incremental weight increases and uses a variety of exercises and types of equipment to target specific muscle groups. Strength training is primarily an anaerobic activity, although some proponents have adapted it to provide the benefits of aerobic exercise through circuit training. Source: Wikipedia/ Strength Again, not intended as a fat burning exercise, though if performed at a fast pace with heavier loads it can be. Fat Burning Potential: Average :(~5/10)
- Turbulence Training.
- Circuit Training. Circuit training is a form of body conditioning or resistance training using high-intensity aerobics. It targets strength building and muscular endurance. An exercise “circuit” is one completion of all
prescribed exercises in the program. When one circuit is complete, one begins the first exercise again for the next circuit. Traditionally, the time between exercises in circuit training is short, often with rapid movement to the next exercise. Source : Wikipedia/Circuit Training Circuits vary with exercises primarily focusing on using one set of muscles. Fat Burning Exercises require the simultaneous use of multiple muscle groups. Fat Burning Potential: Below Average (~4/10) depending upon exercises involved.
- Cardio Based (Cycling, jogging, rowing,cross country,walking, skiing).
This form of exercise typically requires a low level of effort in order to participate – at least in a non-competitive level. Having said that, even serious / professional long distance runners can look ‘flabby’ with rolls of loose skin on their arms, legs and abdomen. At professional level, participants use a variety of workouts (including hiit) to build muscle around their entire body with the added benefit of burning off the excess fat. Fat Burning Potential – For weight loss / amateur – Poor (2/10) More information given in the post(s) cardio exercise and cardio kills your weight loss.
- Football & Rugby. Wether you follow rugby / football or not, the chances are you will know someone who participates or follows the sport. Football and rugby are physically demanding sports requiring extensive periods of intense exercise to include (predominantly) running and kicking / throwing a heavy ball across a pitch in order to secure a goal by ‘placing’ the ball in your opponents net. Rugby players tend to be heavier set in their physique due to the inherent heavy contacts with your opponents. Fat Burning Potential :Av – Good (~5 – 6/10)
- Squash, tennis, and badminton. Again, probably self explanatory. Tennis, squash (or racketball) and badminton are very physical sports requiring intense agility and accuracy simultaneously in order to plan and secure points against your opponent using a large raquet with a small ball across approx 40 yd pitch. Cardio and strength training required. Squash is the fastest of these with matches lasting 20 mins. Very intense. Fat Burning Potential : Good (~7/10). Tennis matches can be short or long depending upon your skill level and your oponents skill level. Fat Burning Potential : Good (~7/10) Badminton lies between the two in terms of possible match length and fitness levels. Fat Burning Potential : Good (~7/10)
- Swimming. Swimming is a whole body conditioning exercise. Great for overall tone but not as a fat burner. Fat Burning Potential: Below Avg (~3/10)
- Athletics Athletes have to train very hard to master their individual sport. Muscle based athletics fare well as fat burners though they are more of a ‘career’ sport due to the time and commitment they require to gain teh necessary skill and fitness level to perform adequately. Fat Burning Potential : Average (~4/10)
- Gymnastics As with athletics, gymnastics requires devotion to the sport requiring many hours training/wk to learn the basics of each routine and gain the physical fitness in order to participate effectively. Overweight people rarely engage in gymnastics – flexibility and a relatively toned body at the start is paramount. Gymnastics can be dangerous – a slip or fall can be life threatening if not fatal. Fat Burning Potential: Potentially good but not recorded / regarded as a fat burning exercise- participants are already slim before engaging. Below Avg (~4/10)
- Boxing Who hasn’t seen or heard of boxing? It is an intense and physical sport requiring hours of intense training/wk to gain the physical fitness and skill to compete. However, the training is hard requiring use of multiple muscle groups working simultaneously. Fat Burning Potential :Good (~6/10)
- Body Building Bodybuilding is the use of progressive resistance exercise to control and develop one’s musculature.
An individual who engages in this activity is referred to as a bodybuilder. Bodybuilders use heavy weights to develop their muscles. This in turn causes an intense but brief workload for the various muscles. Professional and competitive bodybuilders workout using massive energy usage to lift heavy weights and develope muscle growth. This intense consumption of calories (energy) burns body fat . However, many bodybuilders use ‘isolation exercises’ to build muscles in specific areas. Due to this ‘isolation’ fat burning is limited. Fat Burning Potential : Average (~5/10)
Better by Design….
As you can see, not ALL exercises are created equal when it come to burning fat. You will probably notice the traditional routes are ,in fact, the lowest performing. It is only over the last 20 years that sufficient attention has been given to which exercise burns the most fat in the shortest amount of time. You would be correct in coming to this conclusion :- the better fat burning exercises are “Better by Design”. They have been analysed and tested ‘in the field’ to perform at a higher rate than the routes. However, one ‘recent’ exercise has proven to be the lowest – Cardiovascular exercise. As detailed in the relevant posts, cardio was ‘declared’ as the ‘go to’ fat burning exercise by General Practice Doctors recommending their overweight patients engage in a form of cardio exercise in order to lose weight.
The top performing fat burning exercises are those originating from the high intensity interval training / strength training but tuned up to focus specifically on burning fat through the effective use of multiple muscle groups working simultaneously in a hard and fast paced routine. Fat Burning workouts can be performed in as little as 5-10 minutes /day. What’s your fat burning exercise?