3 Ways to Make Every Workout Count
In a perfect world, nothing would get in the way of your weekly workouts. But, let’s be real. Life sometimes gets in the way. That’s why when you do exercise, you’ve gotta make it count! It’s OK to squeeze in 10 minutes here, and another 10 minutes there throughout your day. But if weight loss is your goal, then you need to set aside a solid chunk of time – 30 or 45 minutes, 20 minutes at the very least – to kickstart the afterburn effect (what happens when your body continues to burn calories post-workout). Here are three strategies for getting the biggest bang for your buck from each workout.
Focus on high intensity.
If you’re mid-workout and your heart rate’s not up, you’re not doing it right. The most effective way to shed pounds is to train at 85 percent of your maximum heart rate (MHR) – to get this number, simply subtract your age from 220. Then, torch even more calories during your workout by taking your MHR to almost 100 percent for a minute or so with high-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises like sprinting or jumping jacks.
Work different muscle groups at the same time.
Combo or hybrid exercises aka muscle-group combinations let you kill two (or more) birds with one stone. One example of these exercises is lunge with a curl or a squat to a press. Muscle-group combos are awesome because they work multiple muscle groups at the same time, which burns more calories and is more time efficient.
Keep it going with circuit training.
Circuit training consists of a series of resistance-training exercises executed with little to no rest in between. So maybe you’re doing 10 push-ups, then going into a set of lunges, then doing a set of arm lifts. Basically, it’s the muscle-group combos I described above done one immediately after another. And here’s where it comes full circle: Now add the HIIT cardio exercises into the mix, and you’ve maximized both your time and calorie burn. Score!