Best Exercises for Weight Loss

The best exercises for weight loss can help you reach your goals but it takes more than exercise. Today we will discuss the best exercises to help you lose weight and keep it off.

Best Exercises for Weight Loss
Best Exercises for Weight Loss Photo by Prevention

To begin with, weight loss is not easy and there is no weight loss program that will work for everybody. The road to actual, sustainable weight loss is pretty unsexy and not-so-straightforward, Liz Davis, a clinical exercise physiologist in Columbus, Ohio, tells Health. “Weight loss is mostly dependent on the balance between the calories you consume and the calories you burn,” she says.

This means that trendy weight loss products and social media influencers are not enough to help you achieve weight loss. Maintaining a low-calorie intake is the main focus in determining how much weight you will lose with your daily exercises.

But it is not just a matter of how much calories you consume.  A whole bunch of other factors also play a factor in how your body loses weight. According to Harvard Medical School, a personal or family history of being overweight, along with hormonal disorders, environmental factors, psychological wellbeing, and even certain prescription medications can hinder attempts to lose weight.

With that being said, a low-calorie deficit remains superior when it comes to weight loss. But that does not mean exercise cannot at least assist in helping you achieve your weight loss goal. Here, experts weigh in on the best exercises to help you lose weight.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a cardio interval training that is short and very effective. These cardio-based exercises involve short, intense burst of energy, and less intense resting breaks in between.

“High-intensity interval training, or cardio is the most scientifically sound method to burn more calories while exercising,” explains Davis. She notes that, in a short burst, your heart rate takes off and your temperature increases.

“Although the optimal interval depends on the individual and their experience and comfort level with high-intensity cardio training, a good go-to is about one minute on and two minutes off to start,” she explains. Davis notes that, as your endurance increases, you can move to a 1:1 or even 1:30 ratio.

Weight Training

While you will not burn the same number of calories you would in a cardio interval training session, with weight training, a more long-term burn is at hand.

According to a 2019 review of studies published in the journal Metabolism, there’s a strong connection between your muscle mass and resting metabolic rate. (FYI: Resting calorie expenditure makes up for about three quarters of your daily caloric output.)

Yoga and stretching

Note: Yoga, Pilates, and normal stretching will not help you burn calories like cardio interval and weight training can. But they can make you stronger and more flexible to carry out those exercises with precision and confidence, explains Davis.

“Any kind of strengthening and stretching is beneficial for weight loss because it will make your body stronger and more limber,” she says. “This makes it possible to tackle your cardio and weight sessions with more intensity.”

The most important workouts for weight loss: the ones you enjoy the most is the best exercises for weight loss

While high-intensity training will definitely jumpstart any weight loss efforts in the short-term, if you are not finding joy in the workout you are doing, chances are, you won’t do it consistently. And that’s the most predictable factor when it comes to weight loss, research shows.

A study published in the journal Obesity found that a stable, consistent exercise routine (combined with a regular healthy eating habit) was the most substantial factor in long-term weight management.

“The workout you’re going to stick to is the one you really love,” Davis says. “When clients ask me what the best workout for weight loss is, I can tell them that certain workouts will burn more calories. The best exercises for weight lost is the ones that make you feel the best and you love to do.”

Source: Julia, Sullivan CPT. “The 4 Best Exercises to Help You Lose Weight, According to Experts” February 8, 2021

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