Experts have chosen: 4 best exercises to help you lose weight

4 best exercises to help you lose weight

We would all like a quick solution for weight loss, which does not require major changes in our behavior. That is why many turn to various weight loss products (exercise programs, trendy instruction books, or commercialized food and drink). But none of them offer safe, lasting results. However, we have selected the best weight loss exercises for you that can help you with that.

The best exercises for healthy weight loss

The road to real, sustainable weight loss is neither fancy nor easy, says Liz Davis, a physiatrist in Columbus, Ohio. "Weight loss depends largely on the balance between the calories you consume and the calories you burn," she says. 

Trendy products alone will not contribute to weight loss. It depends on your ability to maintain a continuous calorie deficit - which means that you consume fewer calories than your body needs to maintain general bodily functions.

But it's not just a matter of eating calories: reading through other factors also plays a role 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 well-being, and even certain prescription drugs can hinder your attempts to lose weight. 

However, calorie deficit remains an important factor when it comes to weight loss. "To burn 100 calories, you need to walk 45 minutes," says Davis. "And to get 100 calories, you only need a few tablespoons of ice cream…" Exercise can help you achieve your weight loss goal - you just need to choose the right type of exercise. Experts have assessed which exercises are best for weight loss.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

High-intensity cardio-interval training (HIIT) is short but mega-effective. Cardio training includes short (but intense) bursts of energy and smaller breaks. "High-intensity interval training or cardio-interval training is the most scientifically acceptable way to burn excess calories during exercise," explains Davis. 

In a short time, in a burst, the pulse rises rapidly and the temperature rises - these are two physiological variables that will temporarily increase metabolism and burn calories. "You are disturbing the homeostasis of your body during this training," she explains. A 2017 study from the European Journal of Applied Physiology found that calorie-burning during high-intensity interval training continues after exercise. 

And longer than if you kept a steady pace during exercise. And best of all, you don't need training for this type of exercise.

This type of cardio training can be applied to walking, running, cycling, rowing… The list is almost endless. "The only important rule of cardio-interval training is to move at intervals," says Davis.

"Although the optimal interval depends on the individual and his experience and abilities, a good start to high-intensity cardio training is about one minute of exercise and two minutes of rest," she explains. As your endurance increases, you can switch to a 1: 1 ratio. 

Walk or run at a moderately intense pace (say 75-85% of maximum effort - you breathe hard, but you don't run out of breath) for about one minute. Then walk at a slower pace (breathing normalizes) for another minute. Continue that pattern for 30 minutes, and, voila! A super simple HIIT training was achieved.

Weight training

While you won’t burn the rest of the calories you would expend on cardio interval training, weight training leads to longer-lasting (and perhaps even more sustainable) burning. According to a review of studies published in the journal Metabolism in 2019, there is a strong link between your muscle mass and the rate of resting metabolism, which is how many calories you burn at rest. this information is crucial for your ability to lose weight). So, the more you increase muscle mass (resistance training), the easier it will be for you to control your weight. "Weight training helps keep your muscles lean, and the leaner your muscle, the more freedom you will have to eat without gaining weight. Simply put, calorie-burning at rest is increased, ”says Davis. And the heavier the weights, the better. Because slow burning is the real key to losing weight. "In other words, if you don't exercise, but put all your effort into reducing calories, you will reach a plateau and your resting metabolism will slow down extremely."

Yoga, pilates, and stretching

You may be disappointed, but yoga, pilates, and stretching will not help you burn calories as cardio-interval training and weight training can. "But they can make you stronger and more capable of performing those exercises accurately and reliably," Davis explains. 

"Any kind of strengthening and stretching is useful for weight loss because it will make your body stronger and more flexible," she says. And while Davis notes that your calorie expenditure will not be particularly high during yoga, it is still a form of resistance training (you only use your body and gravity during exercise to compensate for the lack of weight).

And the most important weight loss workout: the one you enjoy

Although high-intensity training (whether cardio or resistance training) will encourage your body to lose weight in the short term, if you do not do it willingly, chances are that you will not be consistent. And that is the most predictable factor when it comes to weight loss, research shows. 

A study in the journal "Obesity" found that a stable, consistent exercise routine (paired with a healthy diet) is the most important factor in long-term weight management. "And the training you stick to is the one you like," says Davis. 

“When clients ask me what the best weight loss workout is, I can tell them that certain workouts will burn more calories. But in the end, the best weight loss workout is the one that makes you feel better and that you love. ”
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