25 Dec 2016
Whether you’re a gym junky or prefer sweating it out in the comfort of your own home, most fitness gurus tend to agree that there are a few key exercises that burn the most calories.
Jumping rope targets more muscle groups than jogging challenges your coordination and just 10 minutes provides the same fitness advantages as a 30-minute run. For added benefit, bring the intensity up a notch and try practicing drills that require extra hand and foot skills (like cross overs or double unders).
While we’re on the jumping bandwagon, jump squats burn major calories because they’re a weight-bearing activity - your body must work against force to complete the move. A great lounge room manoeuvre, start by doing a regular squat, then engage your core and jump up explosively. When you land, lower your body back into the squat position. Try and do two to three sets of 10 reps.
Most people love to hate them, but burpees offer a full-body workout because they’re essentially a jump, push-up and squat in one movement. Whether you’re a Jump Tuck, Starburst, Yoga Flow or One-Leg Burpee aficionado, if you can hammer out at least ten a minute (and do 10 reps), you can rev up your metabolism by as much as a 30 second all-out bike sprint.
Cross-fit workouts (often referred to HIIT) are effective because they pair three exercises – pull-ups (do 5), push-ups (do 10) and squats (do 15)– and work different major muscle groups. Plus, any exercise that takes you from standing, down to the ground and back up to again burns more calories, because it spikes the heart rate (if done quickly enough). Do as many reps as you can in 20 minutes and spice it up by adding jumping jacks or sit-ups and you’ll be getting results on par with jogging for an hour at a steady pace.
Kettlebell swings work the powerful muscles around your quads and glutes and send your heart rate into overdrive, because they’re not movements you’re super-efficient at. Some fitness experts believe a decent Kettlebell session (at least 20 minutes) can burn as many calories as cross country skiing, uphill and at a really fast pace.
A great total-body workout using your arm, back and leg muscles, rowing can be done in-gym or a whacky version (the ‘Renegade Row’) done in-house with hand weights. If at home, get into a plank position with your weights in your hands and lift one arm against your body (your forearm should align with your back and your elbow should be at 90 degrees). Hold for two counts, then lower back down, and repeat with the opposite arm. Do 3 sets of 5.
^The Complete Personal Trainer consists of the SIS40210 Certificate IV in Fitness + units of competency required for entry. Please contact us for further details on the course structure.
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