Get OFF the elliptical for once...
and start REALLY working out!
In all of my current workout classes I follow the interval training method. If you want to torch calories, not just burn them, then you must take the intensity of your workout to a whole new level. Basically you try to get your heart rate as high as possible and then bring it back down doing some sort of strength training. In my class we do this for the entire hour, which burns anywhere from 600-1,000 calories depending on how hard you are pushing yourself and the person. A 200 pound man is going to burn at least 100 more calories than a 150 pound woman in an hour of interval training.
WHY does interval training burn more calories than just running on a treadmill or doing the elliptical for an hour?
The cardiovascular key to fat burning is using interval training workouts - workouts that alternate high-intensity levels with lower-intensity effort. Interval training mimics sports - start-and-stop motions with periods of sprinting or close-to-sprinting speeds followed by light jogging or rest.Heart rate is key. That’s the speedometer of the body. If we speed the body up, it will burn more calories, just as a car will burn more fuel if it speeds up.”
Also, you need to mix up your workouts so they stay challenging. This will help keep your heart rate up, and force your body to burn more calories. That is why a bootcamp type class is so great - you're never doing the same workout!
Here is a great example of a beginner interval workout:
1. Warm Up: On the treadmill, with the incline set at a challenging angle, power walk at a speed of 3-3.5 for 7 minutes. Keep your elbows up above your heart. Stop, get off the treadmill, and stretch.
2. Sprint: Drop the incline to 0, increase the treadmill speed, and sprint hard for 30 seconds. Aim for 90% of your maximum heart rate. To recover, bring your speed down to 3.0 and walk for one minute.
3. Squats: Get off the treadmill and squat, with your bottom out to the rear and your legs slightly apart. Then jump from the squatting position into the air, landing in the same squat position as before. Do this for one set of 15 or 20, working your quadriceps. If you’re already in good shape, hold dumbbells by your sides.
4. Overhead Presses: Do 15 or 20 overhead presses with the weights, pushing them straight up and directly over your shoulders.
5. Sprint: Get back on the treadmill and sprint for 30 seconds (no incline). The goal is to be at 80% of your maximum heart rate. To recover, decrease your speed to 3.0 and walk for one minute.
6. Tricep Extensions: Using dumbbells, do one set of 15 or 20 overhead tricep extensions. Your elbows should point toward the ceiling, with the weights behind your head. Lift the weights directly above your head and back down again.
7. Pushups. Do one set of 15 push-ups, with your elbows at a 90-degree angle from the body. Modification: Do the push-ups with your knees on the ground, but do 25 instead of 15.
8. Sprint: Back to the treadmill. Sprint for 1 minute, aiming for 70% of your maximum heart rate. To recover, jog for 90 seconds.
9. Jumping Jacks. Do one set of 15 or 20 jumping jacks. If you're strong enough, add two 10- or 15-pound dumbbells -- lift up the weights when you jump out, in an overhead press position, pulling them back down to shoulder height as your legs go back together.
10. Finale: Incline your treadmill to an angle that really challenges you -- but don't hang onto the treadmill's rails. Walk at a 2.0-3.5 speed for 30 seconds, aiming for 60% of your maximum heart rate. To recover, bring the treadmill down to a 1.0 incline and drop your speed to 1.9 or 2.0 for a 1-minute walk. Finish by stretching.