A common mistake that many people make when using resistance training to lose weight is that they only work one or two body parts per session. Very often, even the moves they use are not suitable for getting your body in a state where it burns fat rapidly.
There are a few principles that you need to adhere to when engaging in resistance training to burn fat. Let's look at what they are.
Full body workouts
You'll burn the most calories when you work out the entire body in one session. The person trying to shed the excess pounds has a very different goal from the professional bodybuilder who focuses on one body part a day.
Working your biceps today, followed by your chest tomorrow and your legs the day after is just not going to cut it. You need to do several different exercises to work all the different muscle groups in one workout.
A sample workout may include reps of burpees, deadlifts, pull ups, mountain climbers and lunges. As you can see, you've worked your back, core, legs, shoulders, arms, etc. You've worked the entire body and burned a lot of calories instead of just doing bicep curls and calling it a day.
Focus on the compound exercises. These are exercises that involve several muscle groups at the same time. A pull up is a compound exercise. It works your back, shoulders and arms. A bicep curl, however, is an isolation exercise. It only works the biceps. The compound move will ALWAYS burn more calories than the isolation move.
Some of the best compound exercises that should be a staple in your training regimen are: deadlifts, squats, lunges, pull ups, bench presses, lat pull downs, abdominal cycles, etc.
Minimal rest between exercises
When doing a full-body workout, when going from one exercise to another, there should be no rest. This will make the resistance training session take on a cardio-like nature. Your heart rate will be elevated and you'll be panting as you execute the exercises in rapid fashion. This is almost like a high intensity interval training session.
Each routine may have 5 to 7 different exercises to work the different body parts. Do as many reps for each exercise for about 45 seconds before moving on to the next. Once all exercises are done, that is considered as 1 set.
Now you can take a 2-minute break before repeating the entire set again. Do about 3 to 4 sets depending on your level of fitness. If you're new to training, 1 set will do and you can progress slowly with time.
Enough weight to challenge, but not annihilate
The weights you use should challenge you but not annihilate your muscles. Ideally, you should be able to do about 10 to 12 reps in 45 seconds. If you can only do 3 to 4 reps before getting wiped out, the weights are too heavy.
When training for fat loss, the reps need to be in the 10 to 12 range and be done in rapid fashion. So, leave your ego at the door and use weights that you can handle.
Vary your workouts
It's important to vary your workouts so that your body is always left guessing and is constantly challenged. If you only do the same workout over and over, familiarity will set in and your highly adaptable body will handle the workout easily.
Hate working out alone or trying to figure this all out alone? Consider hiring a personal trainer.
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