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Full-body, bootcamp-style workouts burn a ton of calories.
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If you want to lose a lot of weight, adding one or two high-intensity workouts to your weekly routine can help. You have numerous options that can boost your heart rate and burn tons of calories, during the workout and afterward. You can choose to do a specific, ready-made routine, or you can make up your own workout by plugging your favorite full-body exercises into a basic high-intensity interval training protocol.
Make it Hard Core
For all of these workouts, your effort level during the high-intensity work phase should be about a 7, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 representing maximal effort. If you're new to this type of training, start with shorter work intervals and longer rest periods, and progress by making the rests shorter before you increase the time or intensity of the work phase.
Because hardcore, full-body workouts require heavy effort, less-fit individuals or those with health concerns should consult with their physician before attempting them. Also, with increased intensity comes increased risk of injury, so these types of workouts should only be done once or twice a week to allow you recovery time.
Head to Bootcamp
Losing weight is all about creating the biggest calorie deficit possible. One of the most hardcore, calorie-burning workouts you can do is a bootcamp workout. Mimicking the military's physical training program, these workouts focus on full body calisthenic exercises that require no equipment.
After a short warm-up, alternate 20 to 60-second bouts of cardio-based moves, such as jumping jacks, squat thrusts, mountain climbers or jogging in place, with 15 to 30 seconds of strength-base exercises, such as pushups, crunches, lunges, squats or flutter kicks. Adapt a bootcamp workout to your level of fitness by selecting exercises you are proficient at. Lay out the exercise order, exercise durations and rest periods so that you're able to complete a 20- to 30-minute workout.
Try a Short, Intense Tabata Workout
Athletes and fitness enthusiasts alike rely on Tabata training to build muscle, improve aerobic fitness and burn up to 15 calories per minute. A Tabata workout matches 20-second intervals at near-maximal effort with 10 seconds of rest. You can do any exercise that fully taxes the body, such as pushups, jumping jacks, jumping lunges, squat thrusts, mountain climbers or sprints.
After a short warm-up, do four to eight rounds of 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off. You can stop there, for a super-quick but intense workout. Or you can rest for two minutes and then repeat the cycle for up to four complete sets.
Create Your Own High-Intensity Interval Workout
High-intensity interval training workouts generally consist of a short warm-up followed by four or more work/rest intervals where the work phase lasts from 30 seconds to three minutes and the rest phase is equal to or longer than the work phase.
HIIT burns a lot of calories during the workout - and continues to burn more calories for between 1 1/2 and 24 hours after. Combine exercise modes to create your own HIIT workout and cash in on this "after-burn" effect. In addition to bootcamp-style exercises, you can incorporate multi-joint, compound strength-training moves like squat-to-press, cleans, and snatches using dumbbells, barbells or kettlebells. For a cardio-only HIIT workout, incorporate short sprint intervals into your jog or bike ride.