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If you're trying to lose weight but the numbers on the scale aren't moving like you'd hoped they would, there are a few considerations that can make a difference. Losing weight is a numbers game that requires you to use up a greater amount of calories than you consume. Incorporating a few weight-loss exercise secrets into your fitness plan can help you get the slimmer body you desire.
Burn Fat with Interval Training
To reach your weight-loss goal, you need to engage in cardio exercises for 60 to 90 minutes on most days. Not having that much time available in your schedule is no reason to give up. You can burn fat and slim down in less time by doing interval training. Interval training involves moving at your normal exercise pace for a short period of time, such as two to four minutes, followed by a one- to two-minute period of faster-paced activity. For example, if you bike, you can pedal at a moderate pace for four minutes followed by one minute of pedaling as fast as you can. The same can be done with jogging, walking, swimming and jumping rope. Interval training allows you to burn about as many calories in 45 to 50 minutes as you normally would in one hour.
Include Strength-Training Exercises
The amount of muscle mass you have directly affects how efficiently your body burns calories while it's at rest. In addition to engaging in aerobic exercise to lose weight, performing strength-training exercises can also help you control your weight while building muscle for a slender-looking body. Do strength-training exercises two to three times per week for about 20 minutes per session. With or without the addition of weights, perform exercises such as squats, lunges, planks and pushups to strengthen and tone the muscles of your upper and lower body, as well as your core.
Take Rest Days
It's tempting to exercise daily when you're anxious to reach a weight-loss goal. But incorporating rest days into your physical fitness plan can be an important part of achieving your goal. Too much exercise can cause your weight-loss efforts to plateau, leaving you frustrated about the lack of results in comparison with your efforts. Take a day off from your cardio routine each week to allow your body to rest and rejuvenate. Likewise, it's important to give your body a one-day rest in between strength-training sessions. Overtraining your muscles can lead to injury, fatigue and loss of sleep or appetite.
Keep in Mind
Your eating habits can help or sabotage your weight-loss efforts. Reduce your calories by 250 to 500 daily to lose a total of 1/2 to 1 pound per week. Don't consume less than 1,200 daily if you're a woman or 1,400 if you're a man. Fuel your body for exercise by eating a diet that's rich in lean protein, fresh produce and low-fat dairy. Replace the "whites," such as white bread, white rice, white flour products and white potatoes, with whole grain versions, legumes and sweet potatoes.