Are you maximizing your calorie-burning time when you work out? Make those minutes count with these workouts for weight loss. Read on to learn just why these workouts are great for losing those pounds, as well as routines for each type of workout.
ADD CARDIO INTERVALS
Cardio intervals, or short sprints in between slower recovery periods, are better at helping you lose weight than steady-state cardio because they force your muscles to work harder without adequate oxygen, a process called anaerobic conditioning. This helps your muscles burn more fuel, perform better, and grow in the long run and can even cause certain gene changes in your body that fire up your metabolism. And since bigger muscles equals more fat burn, interval training is a smart strategy to incorporate into a few cardio workouts each week.
WORKOUT WITH WEIGHTS
The secret to melting pounds is a strong foundation, and the best way to build muscle is with weights. "When you're doing weight training, it's not so much about burning calories; it's about gaining as much muscle as possible," explains trainer Tia Falcone, who helped 2014 Miss America Nina Davaluri lose over 50 pounds.
"All women need to gain as much muscle as humanly possible; that’s what’s going to make you smaller, and it raises your base metabolism permanently." Don't worry about weight training bulking you up -- in fact, picking up a pair of hefty weights will actually slim you down faster than forgoing the weight room altogether.
GO HIGH INTENSITY
Intervals aren't just for cardio workouts. Try varying your intensity during your next circuit workout; you'll get the same afterburning and belly-blasting benefits while burning many more calories in a shorter amount of time. Try high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which alternates working out at your max with recovery periods, to see results fast.
EXERCISE IN THE MORNING
Studies have shown that those who get their workout over and done with in the morning tend to burn more calories during their workouts. It could be that you have more energy in the morning or that morning exercisers tend to stick with their workouts more, but in any case, morning workouts often are best for a hectic schedule. If you find it hard saying no to dinner plans when it's time for a workout, waking up earlier in the morning to fit in exercise may be just what you need to see weight-loss results.
FIND A WORKOUT YOU LOVE
Consistency is the key to weight loss, so when it comes to what is going to help you lower the number on the scale, the workout that works is the one you keep doing. Find a workout that doesn't feel like one, like a dance class, a weekly hiking date with your best friend, or a brisk walk after dinner, so that you can -- and want -- to continue to do it.