Howdy folks (I remember when I first legitimately heard this in Texas, wow was it weird). I made this post for my fitness minded folks concerned with the best means to control calories and/or lose weight. What I’ve got for you are 3 things (and a bonus) on how to spend more calories without being on a treadmill for 2 hours after work.
High intensity exercise
High intensity exercise is one of the best ways to “burn” a ton of calories in a 60min or so period. You may have heard of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) and that’s because it works! I primarily only do this kind of exercise with fitness clients. When you see a “track body” and watch them train or a good bootcamp class, this is what they’re often doing. This type of training requires you to:
- Exercise in 30sec-2min intervals
- Complete full body exercises: throwing medicine balls, squat to overhead presses, Dumbbell Rows, sprints, etc
- Have short rest intervals in-between sets/rounds, usually 30sec-2min
- Move A LOT
Such sessions often include weightlifting although they certainly can be just body weight. This type of exercise works because:
- The movements require most or all of your body to do it which uses more energy
- The short time frame allows for many effortful repetitions vs slow running/biking
- The oxygen debt you owe each set (fancy way of saying you being out of breath) create a usage of fat calories at rest and afterwards that can contribute
- Again, this calorie usage continues after you are finished as your body scrambles to recover
- ALL OF THE ABOVE = LOTS OF CALORIES USED which is the most important factor
Although long running is great, unless you’re a decent runner, it’s hard for many people to run long and fast enough to use many calories. Track athletes, particularly sprinters too (the really fast people), are toned the way they are because their sprints are very intense, they do a lot of them, and it’s a full body exercise to sprint. They also lift weights usually. Speaking of..
Weightlifting is another great way to combat the calories. Combat the Calories, I like the way that sounds. Let’s clear the air on one thing real quick, TONING IS BUILDING MUSCLE. A toned body is a muscular body that isn’t bulky. And you can certainly lift weights and not gain large muscles. Also, when I say a weight lifting session I do not mean curls and calves, especially in the squat rack. Anyways, weightlifting is great for a few reasons:
- Good exercises require many muscles (squats, lunges, cable pulls, sled runs, dumbbell presses)
- Over time it modestly can increase your resting calorie usage
- The stronger you get, the more weight you can move, the more energy it takes to move the weight because its more, the more calories you burn as you do more.
Free weights add the best value over machines as they require more of your body to contribute to stability and control, which can improve your coordination.
Eating breakfast and eating often
Breakfast. Break fast. What is a fast? Basically, a prolonged period of not eating. Every night (or day for my night walkers) your body enters a small fast. Breakfast is here to break the fast. While intermittent fasting for days at a time is regarded by many as a good practice, skipping breakfast in the morning is not. When you eat in the morning you increase your metabolism (usage of caloric energy) by bringing in energy the body can use. Anecdotally, you can see this with people having higher morning energy. Eating very often keeps the metabolism going.
Not eating breakfast can, over time, lower your metabolism as your body may want to hold on to more of the calories you ingest in since you aren’t eating enough to teach your body not to. This could be due to the history of humans before farming, food was harder to come by so our bodies are still accustomed to hoarding calories.
I thought you wanted to burn more calories? Eat breakfast. And Eat Often (every 2-4 hours). You should have some protein (eggs, greek yogurt, nuts, beans, etc) with carbs, to help you feel more full.
Drinking daily and/or getting hammered every weekend can add a lot of weight to you over time. Stop. These are calories. I’ve trained many 30-50 year old people who lost a lot of weight in the 7 days that they cut out a lot of drinking.
These are my recommendations on ways to use more calories! Make sure you share this online with friends and family while your down here! Do you have suggestions on what to add?
Reach out if you may have questions about any of this!