Most people want to burn fat and there is lots of conflicting advice on the best ways to do that. Here, we talk to the experts and cut through the confusion.
To boost fat burning, you need to turn your body into the equivalent of a petrol-guzzling car with a big engine and the best way to do that is through resistance training.
Why? Because every kilo of extra muscle you develop will burn an extra kilo worth of fat per year, says exercise physiologist and accredited practising dietitian Jo Turner. So the more muscle you have, the more fat you’ll burn.
The heavier the weights you use, the more muscle you’ll build. Aim for two to three sets of eight to 12 repetitions with short rest periods. Don’t worry, you won’t turn into Arnie.
Muscles grow slowly if you’re new or just getting back to exercise, for the first eight weeks you’ll be mainly improving nerve and blood supply to the muscle. After that, depending on your training, it’s possible to gain a kilo of muscle a month. When you want to stop building muscle, while improving strength, switch to lighter weights with longer sets.
Split your workouts
Instead of one 10km run in a day, do two 5km runs, morning and evening, suggests Turner. Your metabolism will stay up after each run and you’ll burn more fat, plus you’re likely to work harder because you’ll have recovered between sessions, which also means more kilojoules used.
Count your kilojoules
Researchers at Brown University School of Medicine in the US found those who lose fat successfully usually expend about 11,200kJ in exercise per week. Try doing a rough calculation on how many kilojoules you use in exercise each week and see how you compare. There are lots of energy charts online try Health Hub’s calorie counter.
For more fat burning tips pick up Good Health’s March issue or subscribe at magshop.co.nz.