The Basics of Weight Loss Exercise
As you no doubt know, there is one very basic rule when it comes to shifting weight: you need to burn more calories than you consume.1
When dealing with ways to eat healthily on a limited calorie intake, we’ve lots of blogs on our site that can help. Here, though, we want to focus on the burning calories aspect. So let’s explore some exercise routines for weight loss and useful tips, and keep reading to discover six alternative ways to exercise for beginners.
What is the best starter exercise to lose weight?
Weight loss exercise for beginners can be a little confusing. If you’re unfamiliar with working out and keeping fit, it can appear to be a relatively intimidating world. It needn’t be, though. Not once you learn some of the basics.
When it comes to exercise and gym work that’s focused on weight loss, there are two main types: strength-based and cardio. Before you get too into those, it’s worth starting at the very beginning with something super easy.
To begin your weight loss exercise journey, a few small steps in the right direction are required. Literally. Walking is a great way to ease yourself into exercise. It’s easy, low impact, requires no training, convenient and burns calories.
Aim to walk relatively briskly for half an hour at least three times a week and you’ll soon feel the benefit. Brisk walking has been shown to help us lose weight and keep it off.2
How does strength-based exercise work?
Also known as ‘resistance training’, strength-based exercise is ideal for anyone trying to shed a few pounds.
According to research, resistance training, whether done with bodyweight, machines, or free weights, increases muscle growth and can slow down the loss of muscle that occurs as we age.3
This kind of workout has recently gained popularity among individuals trying to reduce their weight. While physical activities like jogging and cycling are excellent at lowering body fat, they can also cause a reduction in muscle mass, which makes muscles weaker and causes a greater overall weight loss since muscle is more dense than fat.4
Resistance training improves muscle development and strength while also helping to reduce body fat.5
Which cardio is best for weight loss?
Your heart rate increases significantly during cardiovascular exercise.6 This is great for weight reduction since an increase in heart rate means an increase in fat burning.7
It’s perfectly possible to lose weight without engaging in particularly vigorous activity.8 Low-intensity exercise can also help you burn calories and lose weight if you’re a novice or have physical limitations.8 These exercises include skipping rope jumps, aerobics, jogging, biking, power walking and burpees.
What workout burns the most fat?
Running or jogging is a great way to burn calories.9 Swimming and biking are both effective exercises as well.
Then there’s something called ‘high-intensity interval training’, or ‘HIIT’, a type of interval training that consists of brief bursts of extremely intense activity followed by rest intervals or periods of lower intensity exercise. These activities are truly excellent for calorie burning.10 So much so, in fact, that your body will continue to burn calories for up to 24 hours after a HIIT workout.10
When should I exercise?
If you’ve decided that you’re up for starting strength or cardio exercise for weight loss, you may well be asking what the best time to exercise for weight loss is.
Exercise in the morning is excellent for burning fat, especially when carried out on an empty stomach.11 It has been shown that exercising before lunch kickstarts the body’s metabolism, which means that calories will continue to be burned throughout the day.11
While it’s suggested that you work out in the morning to burn fat, it’s believed that you’re better off working out in the evening to develop muscle mass.12
Although there is growing evidence that the ideal time to exercise may vary according to your sex.13 According to a recent study, men and women have different optimal training periods throughout the day.13 The research suggests that men burn more fat while exercising in the evening.13
How much do I need to exercise per day?
We all lead busy lives. Fitting in hours and hours of intense gym work each day just isn’t practical for many of us. Don’t worry, though. That’s not necessary.
Is 30 minutes of cardio enough to lose weight? It can be if it’s carried out regularly enough and you inject enough intensity into what you do.
6 other ways to lose weight through exercise
If you can start exercising regularly, that’s great. Whether you have time to or not, there are other ways to up your activity level and burn calories, even when you’re busy.
Why not try:
- Walking the dog more. Not got one? Maybe walk an elderly neighbour’s dog for them.
- Try a standing desk for when you’re at your computer. Every hour that you’re standing is approximately 80 calories burned.14
- Get off the bus a stop earlier and walk the rest of the way.
- Park further away from the supermarket.
- Skip lifts and elevators – always take the stairs where possible and if able to do so.
- Schedule ‘walking dates’ or meetings instead of stationary ones.
So there you have it – how to lose weight healthily with exercise… Good luck!