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What is the Best Workout for Fat Loss?

Plus my favorite exercise combinations…

The truth is, the best way to lose fat is to eat healthy.

Don’t worry, I’ll get into what the actual form of exercise is for decreasing your body fat. I just want to lay it out there that this advice won’t mean shit unless you eat right. Without the correct nutrition, no amount of exercise will get you to your ultimate goal of looking shredded, lean, and downright sexy.

Okay, with that out of the way…

How do you lose fat?

Scientifically speaking, you need to put yourself in a certain condition and pair it with a type of movement for the ultimate loss of fat weight. Unless you are experiencing apoptosis, you don’t kill off fat cells. Instead, you decrease the weight of those fat cells by depleting them of their energy.

Basically, you burn stored fat for fuel.

But how do you get to this point? If you have eaten recently, your body has a ton of glucose ready to use and stored. Any activity you do after eating involves burning that glucose for energy. If you don’t use all of it, it will be stored as body fat.

However, if you practice intermittent fasting, you deplete your body of its glucose stores, meaning your body has to look for other forms of fuel.

The next place they look? Fat cells.

After 12 hours of fasting, glucose should be a memory and fatty stores enter the bloodstream to be burned as energy. So, logically, wouldn’t it be best if you worked out to burn the most when in a fasted state?

That would be the condition in which to do your cardio: If your body has moved on to burning fat, burn more fat by exercising before you break your fast.

So what type of workout would be most effective while fasted?

Of course, any kind of cardio is great for you when you’re in ketosis, but the most bang for your buck is *drumroll* High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT.

Here’s why:

  • Depending on your method of HIIT, it burns an insane amount of calories in a short amount of time. The top two options for HIIT training involve jump-roping and boxing. These burn a ridiculous amount of calories (372 and 335, respectively, for 30 minutes for a 155-pound individual). All of these calories burned will be fat calories burned when fasted.
  • HIIT makes it nigh-impossible to overtrain. Instead of doing 80 minutes of steady-state cardio, you can do 15 minutes of HIIT cardio for the same results. It won’t hamper your strength and you can do it daily with little recovery.
  • It burns and burns and burns. After your short, intense workout, your heart rate will still be going slightly above normal. It is minimal, but there is an after-burn effect from HIIT, which means more calories burned, which means more fat cells depleted.

You’re always looking for a way to lose fat fast. This is the fastest way. If you eat right 90% of the time, do some sort of strength training, and perform HIIT workouts while fasted, it will be tough to not see epic results.

What is my favorite HIIT workout?

I have two. One involves a jump rope and some exercises that target your core. The other one is a full-body HIIT/strength training hybrid that I use from time to time. (The first one I try to do as often as possible, in the morning before I eat.)

HIIT Workout #1: Jump Rope + Core (Abs)

  1. Jump Rope — Normal Bounce — 30 seconds (10 seconds rest)
  2. Spider-man Mountain Climbers (leg swings out, touches elbow) — 30 seconds (10 seconds rest)
  3. Jump Rope — Criss-Cross the Rope — 30 seconds (10 seconds rest)
  4. Inverted Toe Touches (V-ups) — 30 seconds (10 seconds rest)
  5. Jump Rope — Double-Under — 30 seconds (10 seconds rest)
  6. Forearm Plank — 30 seconds (70 seconds rest)

Do this 2–4 times for a 10–20 minute HIIT workout.

HIIT Workout #2: Full Body Progressions

Do these until failure. Take as little rest as possible in between progressions, and no more than 60 seconds between body parts.

  1. L-sits → Single leg switch L-sits → S-sits → Leg raises → Knee raises
  2. Pull-ups → Chin-ups → Jump negatives → Australian pull-ups (hold at end for a slow negative)
  3. Dips → Jumping negatives → Behind the back
  4. Push-ups → Knee push-ups
  5. Pistol squats → Assisted pistols → Jump squats → Regular squats

This maximizes your time under tension and works your body like none other. This was taken directly from THENX, so if you want a visual, watch his video that explains this workout.

I hope this article helps in your journey to a healthier lifestyle. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. I’d be happy to respond. Keep on livin’!

Jacob Lyda is a freelance writer for hire. He is currently writing a short story collection and will — most likely — be documenting his freelance writing journey and lifestyle on Medium and Instagram. Follow him at your own risk.