Declare War on Calories

The best exercises for blasting calories

It’s time to declare war on the excess calories that are holding you back from a lean, toned physique!

The question is, which exercise kills off calories fast?

Remember, not all exercises are created equal, as running on the treadmill for 30 minutes at a pace of 6 min/km will burn more calories than cycling on the stationery bike at the same pace, for the same duration. A kettlebell class is also likely to burn more calories in an hour than your standard free weights session.

This is mainly a factor of the number of muscles a certain exercise modality engages during the workout, as well as the intensity and other environmental factors, including the effect that gravity has on your body.

For instance, non-weight bearing exercises like water aerobics or cycling have a lower calorie-per-hour consumption rate than weight bearing exercises such as running and walking. Someone who weighs more than you will also burn more calories per hour for the same activity for this reason. Your fitness level and metabolism are also important determining factors in your overall calorie consumption rate.

As such, if you want to get the most ‘bang’ from your time spent exercising then you need to make educated choices about the type of exercise you choose. Any movement that requires complex compound movements, which incorporate multiple muscle groups into one movement, will always deliver better calorie-per-hour consumption rates than simple, single joint movements. If these are weight bearing exercises then it’s even better for your overall burn.

Kettlebell sport is ranked right up there, because it burns calories so fast.

In terms of cardio exercise, running and cross-country skiing are probably the most effective forms of exercise. Since we don’t have an abundance of slow-covered sloped in South Africa, running is often the best option when trying to burn the most calories. Running at an average pace of just under 5min/km can burn in excess of 900 calories in one hour, depending on your weight, the type of route you are running, etc.

The case for high intensity weight training

Don’t rely on one form of exercise, especially if it’s just cardio. If you want to build extra muscle mass and raise your resting metabolic rate (the amount of calories your body burns at rest), you have to use a high intensity weight training programme that incorporates complex, compound movements. This will also add to your overall calorie consumption rate and assist with weight loss.

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