It’s beach season time and you’re looking to melt off as much body fat as possible. The winter months have left you with a little more love around the waistline than you intended.
You don’t to want to waste any more of your time, and want the MOST effective cardio exercises for burning body fat to get you the results you want ASAP.
Here, I will cover the most effective exercises you should be using to whip your butt into shape, and also some insider tips.
Let’s start with a little education
1. LISS (Low-Intensity Steady State Cardio)
This form of cardio you keep a steady pace for 45 mins or potentially longer. Examples of this would be slow-paced biking or walking.
Benefits – Helps naturally lower resting heart rate, easy on the joints, and an excellent starting point for beginners. It’s great for the elderly and severely obese whom it might not be safe to perform a higher intensity workout.
Downsides – Your body eventually adapts, and you have to work harder to achieve the same results. (I’m not saying you should avoid this, but don’t make it your only option).
2. Moderate Intensity Cardio – This form of cardio you once again keep a steady pace for 45 mins or more. Examples of this would be jogging or running (think marathon running).
Benefits – Again, helps lower resting heart rate, improves vo2 max.
Downsides – Puts unnecessary stress on the joints and raises cortisol levels (elevated cortisol levels actually cause you to store body fat).
3. HITT (High-Intensity Interval Training)
Benefits – Increase in GH levels, afterburn effect (burn calories hours after exercise is complete), lowers insulin sensitivity, and improves heart rate variability.
Downsides – Stressful on joints, cannot be performed more than twice a week, and very strenuous activity (not ideal for obese or elderly individuals).
What you should do: Avoid moderate-intensity cardio altogether. This activity is intense enough to stimulate the release of cortisol, and long enough to elevate it significantly. Because cortisol is catabolic, you will actually begin to lose your hard-earned muscle. Instead, use a combination of HIIT (if it is safe for your body) and LISS like walking. Now that we’ve covered that, let’s dive into the exercises!
boxing is a great form of cardio and you can expect to burn anywhere from 450-650 calories per hour depending on the individual.
This doesn’t mean you have to go buy a heavy bag and buy all the gear that goes along with it. Go in front of the mirror and start shadow boxing yourself. If it’s too easy, grab some light dumbbells and box away!
However, if the gym is an option, then be sure to get yourself in front of the bags.
If you want to increase the intensity, try incorporating kick-boxing. Including your lower body will definitely increase your overall caloric expenditure.
2. Jumping Rope
Jump roping or jumping rope, burns nearly 1000 calories per hour. It is an excellent workout for shedding off body-fat!
Although, jump roping can be very strenuous on the joints. Because of the impact it has on the joints, it is only recommended for shorter duration’s.
30 minutes a couple of times a week should do the trick!
The rowing machine is a great overall body workout. It targets all the main muscles in the upper and lower body.
It has less impact on the body compared to running, and still burns a substantial number of calories per session.
Running you burn roughly 600 calories per hour, while with rowing it is closer to 850 calories per hour. I would consider this to be more of a HIIT workout with a lessened risk of injury.
Yes, as we discussed earlier, walking is a great way to keep the body fat burning process going. Unfortunately, people have this misconception of HOW MUCH body-fat they will burn from walking.
Walking alone isn’t going to magically melt away fat, but it can be used along with other forms of cardio to help maximize your results.
For instance, doing HIIT every day of the week is not ideal for successful fat loss, nor is it even safe.
The better solution would be to incorporate some days with walking and fill in the other days with HIIT cardio sessions. Walking can be used for recovery days.
5. Battle Rope Wave
For this exercise, you will probably need access to a gym of some sort to use this exercise. Never the less, this is an AWESOME workout that burns quite a bit of calories.
You can burn about 450-500 calories in a single 30-minute session. Not to mention its easy on the joints, and a great stress reliever.
Typically, you want to do 10-20 seconds of maximal effort, followed by 45-60 seconds of rest. Try to get in as many sets as you can.
6. Walking/Jumping Lunges
You can consider this a strength training and cardiovascular exercise. Lunges are great because you can do them virtually anywhere.
For the walking lunge, it is estimated you will burn about 275 calories in a 30-minute session, while the jumping counterpart is closer to 400 calories.
Jumping lunges can put a lot of stress on the joints, if it is too difficult, the walking lunge is still a great option.
Not only will you burn quite a bit of calories, but you are engaging your glutes, quads, and core to stabilize your self during the exercise. Great for building stronger legs to help improve running, squatting, and your vertical jump.
7. Mountain Climbers
Estimated to burn about 300 calories per half hour workout, it is one very effective fat burning exercise.
There are many different variations on how to perform this exercise. The simplest way in my opinion is to start with one foot in front with both hands on the ground in front of you and start alternating legs in a jumping motion.
For more ideas on different ways to do this, check out this video.
This one is my personal favorite, also my worst enemy. This is for sure fire way to leave you absolutely exhausted. With this exercise, it estimated you will burn about 350 calories per half hour workout.
There are a couple of different variations with the exercise as well. Some add in a push-up, pull-up, kick the legs out, or even add in some dumbbells to make it even more challenging.