Hey Angels and Alphas,
Whether you’re looking to lose a lot or a little weight, exercise is an important component of any weight-loss plan. But not all workouts are created equal when the goal is shedding pounds. Ahead, trainers rank their favorite research-backed workouts for weight loss.
#1 BODYWEIGHT WORKOUTS (A-TIER)
Bodyweight exercises can be used to do both cardiovascular/endurance training and, when pushed to the extent, and strength training. When your body allows it, you can do bodyweight cardio training such as high knees, jumping jacks, burpees, etc. and alternate them with boxing punches in plank jacks, squat jacks, squat jumps, or a low squat.
While you might think you need some equipment to do strength training, in reality, you can focus on making bodyweight exercises more challenging and pushing your body further. This creates a similar way of getting stronger such as using heavier weights throughout an extended period of time.
#2 BOXING (S-TIER)
If you’ve ever done a shadow boxing or heavy bag class, you know that boxing is one of the heaviest, sweatiest forms of cardio.
One study even looked at adults with high levels of body fat and discovered that a high-intensity boxing regimen up to four days a week was the most effective method for reducing body fat when compared to walking and running workouts.
#3 CIRCUIT TRAINING (A-TIER)
The workout of choice for countless personal trainers when they’re introducing beginners to the gym. A high-intensity, steady-state circuit workout can hit different than HIIT since there’s minimal rest involved.
For example, performing 6 exercises for 1 minute each without rest truly pushes the boundaries of what your body is capable of. When you can do a circuit like that three times, then rest a few minutes between sets, you’ll be providing the maximum benefit with a tiny time commitment workout. Speaking of HIIT…
#4 HIIT (S-TIER)
High-intensity interval training is pretty much the most well-known form of weight loss training next to straight up running.
This is because it’s a great way to lose body fat. HIIT exercise has been shown to be much more effective than steady-state exercise when it comes to weight loss. Why it’s not really clear why that is, HIIT does seem to work better than other forms of cardio for the majority of people out there.
#5 ROWING (A-TIER)
Rowing is another full-body workout that’s low-impact – meaning it’s highly effective at helping you rack up calorie burn and lose weight. Furthermore, it’s accessible for people at any level of physical ability.
Research published in the Annals of Rehabilitation Medicine discovered that people who had impaired vision (who often have low levels of physical fitness) were able to lower their fat mass by adding the practice of rowing to their routine five days a week.
#6 RUNNING/CYCLING (A-TIER)
Running and cycling can be extremely effective for weight loss, providing you’re not compensating for the calories you burn through a massive post-run snack refuel. There are many ways to boost your calorie burn while running, such as adding sprints or turning it into an all-out HIIT session.
#7 STRENGTH TRAINING (S-TIER)
Lifting weights not only helps you lose weight through calorie burn, but also improves your metabolic rate and helps you burn calories post-workout. While pretty much any type of weightlifting or strength training will be genuinely beneficial to your body, experts recommend heavy weightlifting in particular.
Engaging in heavy lifting is one of the best ways to increase bone density and muscle size, as well as maximize the number of calories you burn during and after your session.
#8 SWIMMING (B-TIER)
Swimming is one of the best low-impact workouts out there. Because it’s really easy on the joints, it’s an amazing pick for people who find other forms of cardio too harsh. And there are other pros, too! Low risk of injury in a full-body workout.
Improving body composition throughout the entire body. And so much more! Research has continuously shown that swimming is an amazing method people of all ages can use to improve body composition.
#9 WALKING (A-TIER)
Believe it or not, simply bringing up your step count can be an incredibly solid fat loss strategy. Walking trends to count as non-exercise activity thermogenesis, also known as NEAT, which is pretty much a way of saying “the calories your body will burn during your regular daily activities.”
NEAT will, on average, account for about 15-20 percent of the total daily energy expenditure of your body. Increasing it can significantly improve your blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and your digestion — all while burning a ton of calories at the same time.
#10 YOGA (A-TIER)
Yoga classes (or doing yoga solo at home) can help work on flexibility and strength, burn calories, and allow you to destress. Yoga can burn about 200 calories in a 30-minute session.
One large-scale research review concluded that yoga is an effective way to manage your body weight. But apart from the calories you’ll burn while doing it, yoga will also support other factors in your body that make weight loss easier, such as lowering stress.