Fat burning exercises
The fat burning exercises listed in this section help in the following ways:
- Your metabolic rate - the rate at which you burn calories, even during sleep - will go up
- You will have more mitochondria, those central powerhouse units in the muscle cells, where fat and calories are primarily burned
- Your lymphatic flow will be increased
- You will gain muscle strength and endurance
- You will lose weight and gain muscle mass
- Your body composition will shift, with a higher proportion of muscle to fat
- Your bones will be strong and sturdy, with far less chance of osteoporosis
- You'll have better coordination and balance
- You'll be less prone to fatigue
Here is a list of the best exercises you can do to burn fat, sorted from easy to hard:
Fat burning exercises guidelines
Before you begin your first fat burning exercise workout, there are a few guidelines you should keep in mind:
- Orient yourself with the equipment:
One of the first things you should do before you begin is thoroughly familiarize yourself with the selectorized weight-training machines that you plan to use in your gym or the dumbbell routine that you will use at home.
- Always warm up your muscles:
Do a 5-10 minutes of light calisthenics or stretching exercise involving all parts of your body. Spending 5-10 minutes on the treadmill to elevate your heart rate is also important.
- Move from exercise to exercise in the time of active rest allowed:
When you are doing the circuit part of the program, don't take more time than you are allowed to get yourself set up on the next machine.
- Lift moderate weights:
When you are using a machine, lift only the amount of weight you can comfortably lift 10 times within 20 seconds. The correct amount of weight will be enough to make you feel as if you have reached the point of muscle fatigue by the end of your required reps.
- Maintain correct body positioning:
You should know the correct positioning when doing a certain exercise. This is very important and will help you not to injure yourself.
- Don't forget to breathe:
Keeping respiration going will keep your blood pressure from rising. Depending on the exercise, inhale when you extend and exhale on the way back in; inhale on the way down and exhale on the way out.
- Complete all repetitions:
If you are doing circuit exercises and the amount of weight you are using becomes heavy, stop the set, reduce the weight, and continue until you have completed the set of repetitions.
- Stay hydrated:
Make sure that you carry a bottle of water with you when exercising and take frequent drinks. You will want to drink between one-half and one entire 1.5-liter bottle of water per hour of workout time.
- Always cool down:
Finish your workout with a cool down to decrease your pulse and breathing rates. Gradually reduce the intensity level until your pulse returns to a normal resting state. Then perform some easy, static stretching exercises to loosen tight muscles and increase flexibility.
Exercise 1: Outer thigh
- Lie on your side with your head resting in a neutral position on a 6-8-inch pillow when compressed
(a folded towel is another option) and your hips stacked vertically. Bend your lower leg slightly.
- Tighten your abdominals and lift your free leg, keeping it aligned with the trunk of your body and keeping
your knee facing forward. Either lift it to the height shown in the picture or lower, as tolerated.
Exercise 2: Inner thigh
- Lie on your side propped up on your elbow with a folded towel or a 6-8-inch pillow under your elbow for comfort.
Bend the knee of your top leg comfortably as shown.
- Keeping your hips stacked vertically and your trunk stabilized, lift your bottom leg straight upward as
shown in the picture or to a lower height as tolerated. Keep your knee facing straight ahead.
Exercise 3: Standard crunch
- Lie on your back with your head on the floor and your arms crossed over your chest, legs bent and feet
flat on the floor.
- Raise your head and shoulders off the ground. Hold for a few seconds, then lower your head and shoulders
to the starting position.
Exercise 4: Reverse crunch
- Lie on your back with your head on the floor, arms braced at your sides with palms on the floor. Legs are
raised and knees bent at a right angle with calves parallel to the floor.
- Begin by bringing your legs back toward your chest while contracting your lower abs. Slowly move
back to the starting position.
Exercise 5: Press-ups
- Lie on your stomach in the position as shown.
- Lift your chest upward as tolerated, keeping your hips pressed into the floor. Stop lifting if back
pain or discomfort occurs.
Exercise 6: Cross-body lift
- Get down on all fours with your back straight.
- Tighten your abdominal muscles and slowly raise one arm and its opposite leg until they are in line or
slightly above the level of your back.
Exercise 7: Bridge
- Lie face up on the floor with your arms by your side, palms down, feet flat on the floor with your knees bent.
- Tighten your abs and raise your trunk until your body forms a straight line between your
knees and your shoulders.