Are you trying to lose weight, but find that it’s just not happening? Even though you’re making healthy choices and working out regularly, the scale just won’t budge.
Well, if this is the case for you, there’s a good chance that you’re doing something wrong in your workouts. In this article, we’ll be looking at some of the most common mistakes people make when doing conditioning workouts for weight loss.
Right here on Buy and Slay, you are privy to a litany of relevant information on exercises to lose weight at home, cardio exercises, strength training for weight loss, and so much more. Take out time to visit our catalog for more information on similar topics.
Conditioning Workout For Weight Loss
Metabolic conditioning (MetCon) is a special combination of cardio and strength workouts. It’s not the long, slow cardio we’ve spent the last 20 years doing, nor is it the boring old straight-set strength training workouts, either. Popular types of MetCon include P90X, CrossFit, Insanity, or high-intensity circuit training,
There are people who think that metabolic conditioning is the most time-efficient way to burn fat and build endurance, but is that really the case? And if so, is all that high-intensity exercise really good for most people? Find out what’s so great, or maybe not-so-great, about MetCon.
Why MetCon Gets Results
MetCon, like a lot of fitness jargon such as fat burning zone or toning up, is a bit of a misnomer. You don’t really have to exercise to ‘condition’ your metabolism. Your body is metabolizing all the time and, if it ever stops, that means you’ve stopped, too.
However, according Greg Glassman, the founder of CrossFit and one of the premier experts in high-intensity training, metabolic training is about increasing “the storage and delivery of energy for any activity.”
His well-written article goes into great detail about this, with discussions about the energy pathways of the body and how MetCon, unlike traditional cardio or strength training, targets each of them in a more effective way. All of that is important and his article is well worth reading, but what MetCon is really about for the average person is one thing: getting results.
Watch any P90X or Insanity infomercial and you’ll see those hard, gleaming muscles of a lean, fat-free body that many of us dream of. So what’s the secret behind these results and can we all have them? That depends on what you want and how hard you’re willing to work.
The real secret to MetCon isn’t about what you do, it’s about how you do it and if you do it right, you can:
- Burn more calories for weight loss
- Increase the calories you burn after your workout, also called the afterburn
- Teach your body how to use different energy systems more efficiently, including the phosphagen system (immediate energy required), glycolysis (intermediate energy required) and the aerobic system (extended energy required). While this isn’t always a priority for the average exerciser, this can be a tremendous boost for athletes.
- Build strength, endurance, and fitness for almost any activity—competing in races, going into the military or law enforcement, sports, marathon yard work sessions, etc.
So, if you can get all that from MetCon, why aren’t we all doing it? For one, it’s a complex way of exercising and we often need expert instruction, guidance and motivation to do it safely and effectively. For another, it’s often much too intense for the beginning exerciser or even the average exerciser. Just ask my husband how many days he was sore when he did P90X. His answer? All of them.
Pros and Cons
Despite the great results you can get from this high level of exercise, there are things to consider before investing your time and energy in this type of training.
- Good for losing fat and gaining muscle
- Builds strength, power, and endurance
- Builds a high level of fitness
- Workouts have a lot of variety
- Workouts are short
- High quit rate
- High rate of injury
- High amount of delayed muscle soreness
- May suppress your immune system
- High rate of misery
Advantages of MetCon:
- Fat loss/Muscle gain: The most attractive thing about MetCon is the fact that the high levels of intensity help you burn more calories during and after your workout. The exercises, which usually include whole body, compound movements, help you lose fat and gain muscle more quickly and more efficiently than cardio or strength training alone.1
- More strength, power, and endurance: Because you’re targeting all of your energy pathways in one workout, you’re conditioning the body on every level.1
- High level of fitness: If you can work at that high level of intensity, you can probably kick butt in just about every other activity in your daily life.
- Variety: People enjoy MetCon workouts because they have so much variety. You’re not slogging on a treadmill for 45 minutes to nowhere. You’re doing a variety of exercises that will keep both your mind and body engaged.
- Short and sweet: You have to work very hard, of course, but the payoff is you only have to do it for 10 or 30 minutes.
Disadvantages of MetCon:
- High quit rate: Some experts have suggested that more than 50 percent of exercisers will eventually quit workouts that are too intense. With the exception of one person, everyone I know who’s tried P90X or CrossFit got amazing results…and quit after a certain period of time because of burnout, injuries, exhaustion, and boredom.
- High rate of injury: These workouts cause fatigue and fatigue leads to bad technique and bad technique often leads to injury.2 The fact that many beginners start at an intensity that may be too high for them is also a major contributor to injuries.
- Debilitating muscle soreness: While these workout programs should include enough rest days for your muscles to recover and minimize soreness, many times they don’t, leaving you sore day after day.
- May suppress your immune system: Studies have shown that very high-intensity exercise, particularly without enough recovery time between exercises or workouts, can actually increase our risk of infections like colds or viruses. This may be due to the fact that, under stress, your body produces a stress hormone, cortisol, which has an immunosuppressive effect on the body.
- High rate of misery: Some people like to challenge themselves at a high level of fitness. For others, this level of exercise will just feel miserable.
The Basics of a MetCon Workout
So what makes a workout MetCon as opposed to something else? There aren’t official guidelines, but there are some basic rules when setting up MetCon workouts.
- It’s set up in a circuit format. That means you do each exercise one after another and repeat the circuit 1 or more times.
- It usually involves non-competing exercises. That means exercises that allow one muscle group to work while the other muscle group rests. For example, doing a lower body exercise (e.g., squats) followed by an upper-body exercise (e.g., pushups).
- You work at a very high intensity for 10-120 seconds. That means you need to be anaerobic or around a Level 9-10 on the perceived exertion chart during the work sets. You need challenging exercises, such as whole body, compound movements, working as hard as you can during the time you’ve chosen. The amount of time you work will depend on your goals:
- For power, you might do sprints for 10 seconds and rest for more than a minute.
- For endurance, you might do 2 minutes of high-intensity cardio followed by 30 seconds of rest.
- For fat loss, you might be somewhere in the middle—30 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest, for example.
- Your rest intervals are very short. Again, the rest interval you choose is based on your goals and fitness level. The general rule is to rest only as long as you need to push hard with the next exercise. This is different for everyone, so you’ll have to practice to find the right rest interval for your body.
- Your workouts are short. To really generate a high level of intensity, you’ll want to keep your workouts between about 10-30 minutes. More than that may compromise your form and energy.
- You should only do this workout a couple of times a week. This workout is very hard on the body, so try incorporating more moderate training during the week—lower intensity cardio and regular strength training.
Work up to MetCon Training
This level of training is not for beginners. Even if you already exercise, you still need time to condition your body to work anaerobically if you’re not already doing that in your workouts. You should start with basic fitness, such as an exercise program for absolute beginners, and gradually incorporate higher-intensity workouts into your routine such as:
- Interval Training
- Basic Circuit Training
- High-Intensity Interval Training
- Tabata Training
Sample MetCon Workout
- Warmup – Any cardio activity for 5 or more minutes
- 30 seconds – Burpees
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Squat Press
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Mountain Climbers
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Squat Jumps
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Burpee with Renegade Rows
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Plyo Lunges
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Bear Crawls
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Froggy Jumps
- 10 seconds – Rest
- 30 seconds – Pushup to Side Plank
- Repeat 1-3 times.
exercises to lose weight at home
So, here we would like to suggest to you the 7 best and popular exercise programs that you can practice at home and make yourself stronger, fitter and healthier.
1. Aerobic Exercises
Walking is considered one of the best weight loss exercises. Walking at a fast pace is a great exercise for burning calories. An exercise program that puts minimal stress on your joints and can be incorporated into your day-to-day activities.
According to many studies, A 70-kg individual burns around 167 calories per 30 minutes of walking at a pace of 6.4 kph. It is also observed that an individual can reduce their body fat by an average of 1.5% and waist circumference by 2.8 cm by walking for 50-70 minutes 3 times per week.
Jogging and Running are considered to be the king of weight loss exercises. These exercises are total body integrated exercises. It will strengthen your legs and be very effective for belly fat. The major difference between running and jogging is the pace. Jogging is between 6 – 9 kph and running will be around 10 kph.
Running and Jogging will approximately help burn 372 calories per 30 minutes and 298 calories per 30 minutes respectively. The combination of these 3 exercises will certainly help improve your muscular strength and overall body weight to keep you fit and healthy.
Set aside 1 hour of your time and include these exercises in your routine.
- Start with walking exercise for 15 minutes.
- Increase your pace and start Jogging for the next 15 minutes.
- With a constant increase in pace, run for another 15 minutes.
- Reduce your pace and come back to jogging for 10 minutes.
- Relax your body and slow down your pace and walk for 5 minutes.
2. Skipping or Jumping Rope
Skipping exercise offers a complete body workout and helps increase your muscle strength, metabolism, and burn many calories in a short time.
Skipping exercise done regularly will bring in calmness and help to ease depression and anxiety. The workout also increases your heart rate which results in faster pumping of blood across your body to keep your heart in a better and healthy condition. Along with your heart, this exercise takes care of your lungs by keeping them functioning and healthy.
Everybody has a distinctive body and which makes the process obtain different results. Losing weight is nothing but burning more calories than you intake and skipping will surely help you do that. This form of exercise approximately burns calories close to 1300 per hour.
- On a flat surface, stand with your back straight.
- Make sure your feet are together and pointing straight.
- Keep your hand straight pointing downwards close to your thighs.
- Jump off the ground and let your rope pass under your feet and bring it back.
- Repeat these steps and increase your jumping speed constantly.
Plank Pose or Plank exercise is one of the most effective full-body workouts. The biggest advantage of Plank’s workout is it targets most of the major muscle groups in the body. It strengthens your muscles in the core, shoulder, arms, chest, back, and hips. Along with these benefits, Plank exercises help in quickly burning the excess fats and calories from the body.
A workout that seems to be a simple and easy one but it’s quite exhausting and intense. The plank exercise is a great example of the longer you workout the better will be your results. You need to focus on holding your plank position for a longer period to find quick and better results.
Plank exercise has different variations that target different muscle and body areas. Each variation is very helpful and keeps improving your core strength, body balance, endurance, and posture.
Plank Exercise Variations
The Standard Plank: It is also known as The Extended Arms Plank. This position is best suited for beginners who are looking forward to improving their core strength. This workout is great for improving metabolic activity and digestion. The forearm Plank variation is an identical version of the extended arms plank. The target areas of this workout are the core, arms, shoulders, and back.
The Mountain Climbers: Considered as one of the intense variations of plank workout. A full-body workout that burns excess calories and fat from the body. The targeted areas of this workout are the biceps, hamstring muscles, core, triceps, and chest.
- Get down into the Push-Up or Standard Plank Position.
- Now bend your right knee and pull it towards your chest.
- Push your right knee back to your initial position.
- Now bend your left knee and get it towards your chest.
- Push your left knee back to your initial position
- Continue the above steps around 20-25 times.
The Reverse Plank: This is a variation of the standard plank but done in a reverse manner. This workout is an excellent way to stretch your body. A workout that reduces unnecessary fats and calories from your body. It helps in strengthening your core, shoulders, back, chest, and gluteal muscles.
- Sit down and extend your legs in front of you.
- Place your hands behind your hips for your upper body support.
- Now lift your hips by straightening your hand and form a straight line with your body.
- Hold this position for 40-60 seconds.
- Repeat these steps and methods around 20-30 times.
4. Push-Ups and Pull-Ups
Push-ups are one of the most popular exercises and it is a workout that can be done at any time, anyplace, and by anyone. Push-ups exercise is very useful for weight loss as it pushes your body away from the ground and exerts energy which in turn burns calories.
Push-up exercises are good as it burns calories quickly and makes you focus on the larger muscles in your upper body. Push-up workout also focuses on your chest, shoulders, back, biceps, and triceps. Push up exercise will also strengthen your core muscles and make your body physically stable and healthy.
Push-ups help in building more lean muscles in our chest, shoulders, biceps, and triceps. If you keep practising push-ups for weeks or months or years, then you will build a great amount of muscle mass, and to maintain your muscle your body has to expend its calories.
- Look for anti-slippery and flat surfaces.
- Place your hands facing forward and slightly wider than your shoulder width.
- Set your feet together or slightly apart in a comfortable position. Initially, you can keep your feet further apart until you find a proper balance.
- Now bend your shoulders as low as possible towards the floor and push up back and straighten your arms.
- Repeat these steps for 15 reps and 3 sets.
Pull-ups focus on several muscle groups that burn more calories as multiple muscles like biceps, triceps, back and core are working together. This workout can aid you to get in shape, increasing your ability to burn fat and boosting your metabolism. To complete a pull-up it nearly takes 15 muscles and the primary muscles are your lats and biceps.
According to the study, doing a pull-up workout will help you burn nearly 10 calories per minute. It is recommended that at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity workout have to be done each week as cardio is one of the best ways to burn calories.
- Grip the pull-up bar with your arms fully stretched by standing straight.
- Now bend your knees and pull yourself until your chin clears the bar.
- Come back to your original position slowly.
- Repeat these steps for 15 reps and 4 sets.
Squat exercises are known as muscle strengthening exercises. The main aim of this exercise is to improve the lower part of the body. Squats help burn calories and prevent fat from accumulating in your lower part of the body. This exercise helps improve your mobility and also balance. A beginner should aim for 3 sets of 12-15 reps of at least one type of squat to expect better results.
- Stand straight with your feet wider than your hip width with toes facing front.
- By bending your knees and ankles push your hips back.
- Sit into a squat position by keeping your heels and toes on the ground.
- Keep your knees bent to a 90-degree angle and pose yourself parallel to the floor.
- Straighten your legs by pressing your heels and return to the standing position.
A popular strength training workout that strengthens and tones your lower body and improves overall fitness and athletic performance. Lunges mainly focus on strengthening your back, hips, and legs.
Lunges help in building lean muscle and reduce body fat. It is important to push yourself and include lunges in a high-intensity workout routine with the help of heavyweights. The single-leg movements involved in this workout stabilizes muscles to develop balance, stability, and coordination.
- Stand straight with your back and abs upright.
- Bend your knee by keeping your right leg in the front.
- Now, bend your knee until your right thigh is parallel to the ground and left one perpendicular.
- Keep your front knee above your heel.
- Come back and bring your feet together.
- Repeat the above steps with your left leg.
- 30 reps of alternate lunges are very helpful.
Along with exercises that need to be done at your place for weight loss. There are other factors and methods that can be helpful for weight management.
Yoga, a 5000-year-old transcription has proved to be an effective weight loss therapy. It is believed to be developed by Rishis and Brahmans and has 5 basic principles: Exercise, Diet, Breathing, Relaxation, and Meditation.
The combination of Yoga and healthy eating has proven beneficial as it helps to lose weight along with keeping your body and mind healthy. It also improves your mindfulness and relation with your body. You can also lower your blood sugar levels by practising yoga for diabetes.
Along with weight loss as its benefit, Yoga has more benefits to offer such as:
- Improved Cardio Health
- Increased Muscle tone
- Balanced Metabolism
- Improved Respiration
- Increased Flexibility
- Stress Management
Yoga Poses are an integral part of weight reduction. Yoga poses focus mostly on improving concentration and building your muscle tone. Your body should get used to these poses to yield maximum benefits from yoga.
Some of the yoga poses that should be practised for weight loss are:
- Warrior Pose
- Triangle Pose
- Shoulder Pose
- Bridge Pose
- Bow Pose
- Plank Pose
- Downward Dog Pose
- Sun Salutation
Calories Burned With Different Exercises
Here is a quick guide on how many calories different exercises burn within what time. Note that these are just general figures and the actual amount will depend on a variety of factors like your weight, age, fitness level, the intensity of your workout and the amount of time you put into each exercise:
|Jogging/Running||372 to 700 calories per hour|
|Skipping Rope||500-1300 calories per hour depending on weight|
|Planking||Between 2-5 calories per minute (120-300 calories per hour)|
|Mountain Climbers Planks||650 – 700 calories per hour|
|Pull ups||1 calorie per pull up|
|Push ups||About 171 calories within 15 minutes (around 343 calories in 30 minutes)|
|Squats||19-44 calories per every 5 minutes (100-222 calories for every 25 minutes)|
|Lunges||90 calories per 15 minutes|
|Yoga||Between 180 and 460 calories per session (highly dependent on the type, intensity, duration of the session)|
Best time to exercise
Perhaps the best time to do your daily workout routine is early in the morning. The main reason behind this is that exercising on an empty stomach is the best way to burn stored fat. Even if you feel irritated by the early alarm clocks at first, it will slowly become a habit for you, a good one at that. Say, you wake up every day at 7 am in the morning. This way your biological clock shifts earlier, thereby making you tired quickly in the evening or night. This helps in maintaining the schedule diligently.
However, there have been studies that suggest that working out in the evening can be better as our bodies use lesser oxygen during that time, which may help enhance our performance and in turn lose weight. Nonetheless, the studies are quite limited and the majority of researchers direct towards morning as the favoured time to exercise if you want to lose weight at home.
Diet tips for weight loss
Follow these tips to make sure your weight loss programme at home is done properly:
- Do not fall prey to fad diets that promise results in a short amount of time.
- Beware of alluring weight loss pills and belts which may only give short term results.
- Starving yourself is certainly not the right answer as it can lead to other problems like acidity, nausea, etc.
1. Is it possible to lose weight with just exercise?
No, Weight loss is a combination of regular workouts and a proper diet. It is important to ensure you strictly follow both to achieve the desired results.
2. If I Sweat more during a workout, does that mean more fat is burned?
No, Sweat indicates your body’s ability to maintain its normal body temperature. Your body starts to store heat when you sweat so that you can experience cooling by evaporation.
3. How often should one work out to see results?
Work out regularly to get in good shape. It is advisable to work out at least 2-3 times a week rather than once in a while.
4. How many calories to consume in a day?
Calorie intake can be determined by multiplying your ideal body weight by 14. For example, If your body weight is around 135 pounds then you need to consume 1,890 (135*14) calories per day.
5. Can I lose weight in a week?
It is possible to lose a certain amount of weight in a week by maintaining a strict diet and working out dedicatedly and regularly. You may also try intermittent fasting and make conscious changes in your daily lifestyle like walk more often, to quickly lose weight.
6. Will I lose weight if I stop eating?
Weight loss is all about the calories you intake and the calories you burn. When you stop eating, the calorie intake goes down. As a result, you will go into a calorie deficit state and lose weight. However, this is not a healthy option. You must watch your calorie intake but eating is important to stay healthy.
7. What food should I avoid to lose weight?
Any foods with high carbohydrates and fats should be avoided if you want to lose weight. These include french fries, potato chips, white bread, pastries, cookies and sugary drinks.