Best Exercises to Lose Weight
By Stacey Feintuch
Doing any kind of exercise can help you lose weight. But some types of sweat sessions are better for weight loss than others. These workouts are typically high in intensity and burn lots of calories in a short amount of time.
If weight loss is your goal, find a workout that you enjoy so you have a better likelihood of sticking with it. You'll also need to really push yourself in every workout. Give 100 percent and bring your A-game to each and every workout.
Exercise should be a key part of a weight-loss plan. However, maintaining healthy eating habits is just as important, if not more important, than your exercise routine if you want to lose weight. Other lifestyle habits like getting enough sleep and managing stress should also be part of your weight-loss journey. Read more about Easy Ways to Lower Your Body Mass Index.
And always speak with your health care provider before starting any exercise regimen. (Find out more about starting an exercise routine.)
Interval training is any form of exercise where your heart rate repeatedly spikes and then comes down. So, you go hard for a set interval of time, followed by active rest, then go hard again. You need to be sure to take it down several notches before you resume a higher intensity level. The more muscles you have to use, the more calories you'll burn. That's because those muscles all require energy to work. And the more energy you use, the more calories you'll burn, too. One of the many styles you can do is HIIT—high-intensity interval training. Or try indoor cycling, where you use quads, hamstrings, glutes, core and other muscles.
Jump ropes aren't just for the playground or gym class. This cheap and portable tool is actually a good way to burn fat. After just a few minutes, you'll feel your heart racing. Be sure to get in a lot of skips per minute for an effective workout. To get your arms and shoulders even more in on the action, use a weighted jump rope. Just be sure not to jump rope barefoot. It can be painful to get your toe smacked with a jump rope.
Grab your sneaks and head for the hills, literally. Find a hill you can sprint up or crank up the treadmill's incline. Running up hills forces you to work your glutes and legs, two of the body's biggest muscle groups. The more energy you're using, the better the calorie burn.
If you hate running or want to exercise without pounding your joints, try swimming. When doing so, you may want to swim freestyle and skip doing the butterfly, breaststroke or backstroke. Yes, butterfly is harder than freestyle. But freestyle is the stroke that most recreational swimmers can do the longest with the most intensity. This low-impact exercise builds muscles while improving aerobic fitness.
Bypass the crowd waiting for an elliptical machine and head for the rowing machine. Rowing burns tons of calories. It works and strengthens many muscles, including those in your back, core, shoulders and calves. And it improves posture, too.
Yoga on its own isn't great for weight loss. But it can help keep you flexible and healthy for your more intense workouts. It also promotes good mental health, balance and stability.