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What are the BEST exercises to LOSE FAT?

This question is one of the most common questions I get at dinner parties and social events.  We are an over weight society that is looking for quick fixes as the answer to all of our problems –  and being over weight or obese is a HUGE problem.  Research has clearly shown a link between degenerative disease and a lack of exercise and poor diet.
There is hope.  Our body is an amazing machine and can completely change itself given the right training program and diet.  So let’s focus now on the best exercises to lose fat.

What makes an exercise the best?
The best exercise is the one that engages in the most amount of muscle.  This would include pull ups, bench press, squats and leg pres.  By engaging in large muscle groups like back and legs, a person can completely reshape their body.  One of the common mistakes that I see at the gym is the fact that people have a tendency to focus on small muscle groups like shoulders and arms.

The key to fat loss is adding more muscle to your frame.  The more muscle you have the faster your metabolism.  The less muscle you have the slower your metabolism.  Research shows that without weight training, after 25 years of age a person’s muscle mass will begin to decline.  This decline is the primary cause of fat loss as we age.  Why?  Simple because the less muscle you have the slower your metabolism.  Therefore, as we get older we eat approximately the same calories but yet have less muscle or a slower metabolism.
Now, let’s go back to the best exercises to lose fat.  By performing exercise like Squats and Pull ups, you will be stimulating large muscle groups.  The legs and back muscles are about 60% of our muscle mass.  By focusing on these groups, you will be stimulating the larger muscle groups causing an increase in muscle thereby increasing your metabolism.  This fact is true for both men and women.  It is just as important for a woman to perform strength training compared to a man.  The reason is that woman has a lot less muscle and testosterone compared to man.  This is one of the primary reasons why woman have a harder time losing body fat.  When men lift weights, because of extra testosterone they have a greater ability to gain muscle.

Because of the difference in metabolism between men and woman, it is critical that woman lift weights.  One of the common trends among females is that woman will pursue other modalities such as Yoga, Pilates, or running/cardio training.  While there are benefits to each modality listed, the best way to increase metabolism and muscle is to lift weights.  This time tested method has been proven by research as the best way to increase muscle mass thereby increasing metabolism.

I would advise using a combination of weight training and cardio to attain the best results.  As for weight training, learn the 4 basic exercises listed above.  If you are not familiar with them, please oo to my website to learn how to do these exercises – go to “exercise tips”.  Make sure that you go to the point of exhaustion which means that when performing an exercise you push yourself until you can’t lift another rep.  The point of exhaustion is what stimulates muscles to grow.  If you fall short of the point of exhaustion your body does not have much of a reason to add muscle. 

Four Basic Movements

When putting together an exercise program for yourself, I would advise 1 to 2 sets maximum for each exercise.  The ones that I’ve listed are:

  • Leg Press
  • Squat
  • Pull Up
  • Bench Press (Bar Bell or Dumbbell)

    For a long time in the fitness industry, the more is better approach was pursued by most in the fitness experts.  Research now shows that you only need to do one set per exercise to see maximum results.  Simply put, more sets are not better.  What is better is to perform “less sets” and to make sure that you go to the point of exhaustion.  If you’re interested in the research, please go to the “health article” section on my website.

    Diet and Nutrition

    Of course even the best workout won’t help you lose fat if you haven’t optimized your diet.  On my website I have a free grocery list and sample meals.  The most important aspect to eating healthy is eating 5 times a day and have lots of fruits and veggies in your diet.  Fruits and veggies are better than fat loss supplements because they provide lots of nutrients and the extra fiber can act as an appetite suppressant.

    Summary

    These methods will help you to burn more calories, increase muscle, enhance metabolic rate, and will stimulate the production of more fat burning and muscle toning hormones. Of course, there is more involved to achieving your fitness goals. You need to consistently challenge yourself during workouts and take control of your eating habits.

Good luck with your pursuit of a leaner and healthier body..
Shawn
www.shawnphillipstraining.com

Clear Your Mind
Exercise is the most natural way to cleanse your mind and emotions. When your emotions are flustered and your mind cluttered, you will find refreshment after a good workout. When done correctly, it is only during exercise that your mind actually rests.