What Is The Best Exercise For Weight Loss?

Weight loss? What is the best exercise?

We often hear this question, what is the best exercise for weight loss? The answer is a little more nuanced in the gym than you initially would think. This blog post aims to answer this question by stripping it and first discussing what is “weight loss” and, how it should not be confused with fat loss, and the reasoning for this argument. Then this post will discuss the three types of exercise we know to get the optimal results when transforming your body’s composition. These are HIIT, LISS and Resistance training. Do not worry if you are unsure of what these terms mean. We will expand on them later.
Great before and after weight loss in a woman

Why weight loss shouldn’t be your goal, and fat loss or body composition should be!

It must be noted that not all weight is equal within your body! We need to get to sciencey to break down the big differences between muscle and fat regarding weight loss. Studies have directly linked muscle mass with lower levels of all-cause mortality and fat mass with increased risks of chronic health conditions, heart diseases and early death. More interesting muscle requires calories to sustain it, so the leaner your body, the more calories you will burn during your normal daily activities.
fat v Muscle Weight UFB

Are you ready to transform your fitness journey into a fat-burning adventure? Exercise and goal achievement can be daunting and confusing; we are all unique individuals and have unique pressures in our life. Look no further than the exhilarating world of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). Say goodbye to those stubborn fat layers and hello to a fitter, healthier you! In this post, we’ll dive into the captivating realm of HIIT, unveiling why it’s hailed as the best exercise for fat loss.

HIIT for Fat Loss?

Imagine a workout that delivers incredible results in a shorter time frame – that’s precisely what HIIT brings to the table. HIIT involves alternating between intense bursts of exercise and short periods of rest or low-intensity recovery. The beauty lies in its adaptability – whether you’re a fitness newbie or a seasoned athlete, HIIT can be tailored to suit your fitness level.

HIIT for Weight Loss - Fat Burning Exercise

Why is HIIT the Ultimate Fat-Blasting Exercise?

Efficient Calorie Burn: HIIT elevates your heart rate rapidly, maximising the number of calories torched in a shorter time. This ‘afterburn’ effect means you continue to burn calories even after your workout, boosting your metabolism.

1) Preserves Lean Muscle: Traditional steady-state cardio might lead to muscle loss along with fat. HIIT, on the other hand, helps preserve lean muscle mass, ensuring you sculpt a muscular, toned physique.

2) Time-Saving: In today’s fast-paced world, time is precious. HIIT workouts typically last 15-30 minutes, making it easier to fit exercise into your busy schedule without sacrificing results.

3) No Equipment Necessary: You don’t need a gym membership or fancy equipment to dive into HIIT. Bodyweight exercises like burpees, mountain climbers, and jumping jacks can be your go-to fat-burning arsenal.

Getting Started with HIIT: Your Roadmap to Success

1) Warm-Up: Start with a 5-10 minute dynamic warm-up to get your blood flowing and your muscles ready for action.

2) Choose Your Exercises: Mix and match high-intensity exercises with low-intensity or rest periods. For example, you might sprint for 30 seconds, then walk or jog for 60 seconds.

3) Intensity is Key: Push yourself during the high-intensity intervals, aiming for about 80-90% of your maximum effort. These moments should leave you breathless and exhilarated!

4) Recovery: During the low-intensity intervals, let your heart rate come down, but don’t stop moving entirely. Keep the blood flowing to aid recovery.

5) Repeat and Rest: Complete 3-5 rounds of high-intensity intervals, followed by a 1-2 minute rest between each round.

6) Cool Down: Finish with a 5-10 minute cool-down, focusing on stretching and deep breathing to aid your body’s recovery process.

Embrace the weight loss journey at Ultimate Fitness Birmingham UK

Weight Loss Words of Encouragement: Embrace the Journey

Remember, embarking on a fitness journey is about progress, not perfection. The road might be challenging sometimes, but the sense of accomplishment you’ll feel after conquering those HIIT sessions is priceless. Listen to your body, stay consistent, and celebrate each milestone –an extra rep, a longer sprint, or just showing up.

The power of High-Intensity Interval Training lies not only in its fat-burning capabilities but also in the sense of empowerment it instils. As you push yourself beyond your limits, you’ll discover a reservoir of strength you never knew existed. So, grab those trainers, put on your workout playlist, and get ready to HIIT it big time! Your fat loss journey is about to take off – and with HIIT, the sky’s the limit.

HIIT isn’t the only powerful way to lose fat; one of the best exercises for fat loss is LISS. Low-Intensity Steady-State cardio, the unsung hero of the fat loss journey. In this post, we’ll dive into the beautiful world of LISS and explore why it’s a game-changer for achieving and maintaining your fat loss goals.

LISS for Weight Loss

The Essence of LISS: Slow and Steady Wins the Race

LISS is a fitness method that revolves around steady, moderate-intensity cardio workouts. Unlike the heart-pounding intensity of HIIT, LISS workouts keep your heart rate in a moderate range, allowing you to maintain the activity for a longer duration. Think of it as a relaxing stroll, leisurely bike ride, or a gentle swim – activities that are easy on your joints and don’t leave you gasping for breath.

Why is LISS Your Partner in Fat Loss?

Sustainable Consistency: Ever felt burnt out by the intense demands of high-intensity workouts? LISS is a breath of fresh air that can be incorporated into your routine regularly. Consistency is key, and LISS makes it easier to stick to your exercise plan over the long haul.

Fat Adaptation: During LISS, your body predominantly uses fat as fuel. This helps your body become more efficient at using stored fat for energy, aiding in gradually losing fat while preserving lean muscle mass.

Injury Prevention: High-impact exercises can take a toll on your joints over time. LISS is gentle on your body, reducing the risk of injuries and making it suitable for individuals of all fitness levels.

Active Recovery: LISS can be an excellent active recovery option during rest days or after intense workouts. It aids in promoting blood flow, alleviating muscle soreness, and enhancing overall recovery.

Unlocking the Power of LISS: Your Step-by-Step Guide

Choose Your Activity: The beauty of LISS lies in its versatility. Pick an activity you enjoy – walking, cycling, swimming, or even dancing. The key is to keep it at a moderate intensity where you can maintain a conversation without gasping for air.

Duration Matters: Aim for sessions lasting anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes. Start on the lower end and gradually increase the duration as your fitness level improves. Exercising in this style can be done in and out of the gym. If you bring your mobile and headphones, you can binge-watch your favourite shows while walking indoors on one of our treadmills.

Consistency is King: Incorporate LISS into your routine 2-5 times weekly. You can combine it with other forms of exercise or embrace it as your primary fat-burning tool.

Mindful Approach: Use your LISS time to connect with your body and mind. Listen to your favourite podcast, enjoy the scenery, or engage in introspective thoughts.

Stay Hydrated: While LISS might not be as intense as other workouts, staying hydrated is crucial. Keep a water bottle handy to sip on throughout your session.

Hammer Strength ISO Row at Ultimate Fitness Birmingham Gym in the Midlands

Empowerment Through LISS: Celebrate Every Step

The journey to fat loss is not a sprint; it’s a marathon. LISS teaches us the power of patience and consistency. Each LISS session you complete is a step closer to your goals, an action that’s just as important as any other. Whether walking through your neighbourhood, on the treadmill or just getting off the bus a stop early, every moment spent in LISS celebrates progress.

Final Thoughts: Embrace the Grace of LISS

LISS is a gentle reminder that lasting change requires nurturing in a world obsessed with quick fixes. It’s not just about the inches lost or the numbers on the scale – it’s about embracing a sustainable lifestyle that fosters self-care, joy, and well-being. So, on your next visit to our gym, don’t forget that slow and steady can win the fat loss race.

Let LISS be your partner in this beautiful journey towards a healthier, happier you.

While HIIT and LISS are fantastic exercise types to lose weight, doing these alone and without incorporating resistance training into your regime will lower muscle levels in your body composition. So the ideal regime includes high amounts of resistance training and cardio to achieve optimal body composition for longevity, health, and aesthetics.

The ideal mix of cardio and resistance training for weight loss

Resistance Training and Weight Loss

We hope we have made it clear that when it comes to shedding those extra pounds, it’s not just about cardio – resistance training is your trusty sidekick! Here’s the scoop: resistance training involves working your muscles against an opposing force, like weights or resistance bands. Not only does it give you that toned, intense look you’re after, but it’s also a superstar regarding fat loss.

Pro Tip: Fat loss is the key, not weight loss, so the scales are not your friend… a MIRROR IS! Take selfies in the same position, same mirror and at the same time every day regularly. To monitor your results.

Resistance Training for Weight Loss
How does it work? Well, resistance training builds lean muscle mass. And guess what? Muscles are like little fat-burning furnaces! The more muscle you have, the higher your resting metabolic rate. Translation: your body torches more calories even when chilling on the couch. But that’s not all! Resistance training also triggers the “afterburn effect,” scientifically known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). This means your body keeps burning calories after you crush that workout. How cool is that? Here’s the cherry on top – resistance training helps preserve your precious muscle while you’re dropping pounds. During calorie deficits (when you’re eating less), your body sometimes breaks down muscle for energy. But resistance training sends a clear message: “Hey, keep that muscle – we’re using it!” This way, you’re saying goodbye to fat, not muscle. So, there you have it, pal! Resistance training is like your fat-loss fairy godmother, boosting your metabolism, triggering the afterburn, and keeping your muscles safe and sound. Remember, consistency is key, so aim for a mix of cardio and resistance training to power up your fat-loss journey. You’ve got this! And remember, we not only have world-class equipment here at Ultimate Fitness Birmingham, but we also have a world-class team which includes Si Fan and his team.
Female Personal Trainer at Ultimate Fitness Birmingham Danika

Final Thought – Weight loss for Women?

As a reminder, women often dismiss resistance training because they are concerned about being muscled. Please do not believe this myth and it’s tough for men to build muscle mass even with higher testosterone levels. So please be assured, the only MAJOR side effect of resistance training is a leaner and tighter body for women and men!

See you on the gym floor!

First Published: 21st August 2023

Estimated Reading Time: 6 Mins 47 Sec