Weight loss story tips

Are you stuck in a weight-loss rut, unsure which diet will help you shed that excess flab? Ah, if only we could train our bodies to burn more calories in less time. Wait a minute – our bodies can perform this diet-bending feat! Joel Marion, fitness coach and author of The Cheat to Lose Diet(Crown), shares two types of workouts that will kick your metabolism into overdrive. The secret lies in the after-burn, says Marion. All it takes is the right combination of exercises at varying levels of intensity…

When it comes to fat loss, research shows that metabolic resistance training is moreeffective in burning calories than aerobic exercise. Not sure what metabolic resistance training is? It’s a vigorous weight-lifting session that targets multiple muscle groups with only short rest periods between sets and exercises.

This type of training results in an “after-burn,” an increased metabolic rate that persists for hours after the training session ends.

So how does this happen? Well, the combination of intense weight training and short recovery periods disturbs the body’s metabolism – something that won’t occur with moderate aerobic exercise.

One study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology noted increased metabolism for 38 hours post exercise; other studies reported similar findings. That means if you’re sitting on the couch watching TV a day later, you’re still burning calories from the weight-training session you did the day before.

Achieve the after-burn with strength training
Instead of pedaling through a steady, one-hour cardio workout on the stationary bike, try a half hour of circuit-style (mixed intensity) weight training instead. Use a light to moderate weight, keep your rest periods short and most importantly, enjoy the after-burn!

Below, I’ve provided a special full-body weight-training circuit that’s perfect for exercisers of all levels, including beginners, because it uses a light to moderate weight. The principles of the workout are simple:

First, choose three exercises: one upper body push, one upper body pull and one lower body exercise. Pushing exercises are those in which you push, such as a shoulder press or a chest press. Pulling exercises entail pulling movements, for example lat pull-downs or seated rows.

Next, select a weight that you can handle for 15 to 25 repetitions for each exercise. Be careful not to choose a weight that is too light to be challenging or so heavy you are unable to do the prescribed number of repetitions.

To start, do each exercise, one after the other, for 15 minutes, resting as needed. As you tire, you may start doing fewer repetitions – that’s fine. This workout is more about burning calories and fat, rather than building lean muscle.