There’s often a debate about which exercise burns the most calories and aids fitness. You’ve heard some people say cardio is the ultimate calorie-burner, while other swear by weight lifting.
Laura Miranda, C.S.C.S., a doctor of physical therapy, fitness nutrition specialist, and certified personal trainer tells us frankly that it’s true that we tend to expend more calories in the moment while running versus lifting weights, “But weight, or anaerobic, workouts keep our excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), or post-workout calorie burn, going from hours to days.”
The greater the intensity, the more oxygen your body will need post-workout to recover and repair muscles. By choosing exercises that ramp up that afterburn effect, you get more bang for your buck in the long term. “Muscle is the most metabolically active tissue, so the more of it we have, the more effective we are at burning calories all day long,” says Miranda.
Here are 14 best calorie burners out there ranked in order of effectiveness. According to guidelines from the American College of Sports Medicine, the more you weigh, the more calories you tend to burn on any particular task, but a lot of other factors contribute too.
Best Calorie-Burning Exercises
- Jumping rope
This little rope is actually a big-time fat burner. Try to jump at 120 skips per minute and burn 667-990 calories/hour Try using a weighted jump rope to engage your arms and shoulders even more.
- Running Up Hill/Stair Sprints
Endeavor to sprint at max effort on stairs or a hill at a pace that you can only maintain for about 20 seconds, and follow that with a recovery run at half of the intensity of the sprint and double the time to burn 639-946 calories/hour. The harder you push yourself during those sprints, the greater the EPOC.
Keep the rest periods between rounds of jabs and kicks super short for instance 30 seconds of rest for every 90 seconds of sparring to achieve a 582-864 calorie burn per hour
- Cycling intervals
Ride at a sustained high-intensity level to achieve a greater EPOC as opposed to a steady low-intensity state ride. You can burn up to 568-841 calories/hour.
Running at a steady pace helps you to continually burn extra calories throughout the day. Imagine burning 566-839 calories/hour (10 min/mile). For better results, add short bursts of sprints or faster running into your jog. Also, if you run for 80 seconds, walk for 40 seconds.
- Kettlebell circuit
Burn up to 554-822 calories/hour with a HIIT circuit using kettlebells which keeps the afterburn going for 36 hours after your work-out. For best results, do a fluid circuit and don’t stop to rest between each move. It’s recommended that you switch between upper- and lower-body movements so you can keep exercising for a longer period of time.
- Stationary bike
Burn up to 498-738 calories/hour pedaling at a vigorous pace.
- Rowing machine
Get a 481-713 calorie burn per hour at 150 watts, which you can check on the machine. Row in super-fast one-minute intervals and take 30- to 60-second active rest periods by alternating between squats, pushups and planks.
Burn 452-670 calories/hour when taking 77 steps/minute. Stair climbing is a good mix of aerobic and anaerobic exercise. You can hold a one- to five-pound dumbbell in each hand to get your upper body fired up too.
- Strength training
Get rid of 341-504 calories/hour engaging in compound movements that employ more muscle groups over more joints. “You’ll skyrocket your EPOC by swapping out exercises like bicep curls for squats, and crunches for cleans,” says Miranda.
- Metabolic resistance training circuit
Let’s burn 340-505 calories/hour now. Be sure to maintain a high (but sub-max) intensity throughout the workout, with little rest between sets for the entire session.
Ready to burn 322-478 calories/hour at a resistance level of 8? Now alternate the incline and levels of resistance to make the exercise more enjoyable.
- Battle ropes
Try to do five rounds of overhead slams for 30 seconds in order to lose 285-421 calories/hour.
One study showed that doing 3 sets of 30 seconds of battle ropes produced greater acute energy expenditure during the workout than 3 sets of 10 squats with a moderate load.
- Power yoga
To get the most burn, sign up for strength-driven practices, where you match the breath with the movement to achieve the most afterburn. You can burn up to 226-335 calories/hour.
There you have it! Whichever move works best for you, go get Fit!#Rewordit