Lack of physical activity and poor dietary lifestyle are having a devastating effect on our health and longevity. As the number of Americans falling in the overweight or obese range approaches 3 out of every 4 children and adults, health conscious individuals understand the importance of eating healthy and increasing exercise intensity to lose weight and live a longer life.
While limiting the type and quantity of calories consumed is essential to any weight loss program, the type and duration of exercise performed on a regular basis provides the fuel to burn fat and improve the critical biomarkers of health.
Resistance training and aerobic conditioning are the two key forms of exercise, and both should be combined as part of a routine to improve overall health. To fuel quick weight loss, the following cardio exercises are proven to deliver results.
Running and Jogging
There is no better form of exercise to burn fat than running and jogging. There’s no special equipment required and local roads provide the perfect training environment. Add in hilly terrain or increase speed to have a major impact on fat metabolism. Running can burn 600 to 1000 calories per hour, but may not be for everyone due to the risk of knee injury.
Bicycling is an excellent choice to drop extra pounds, and provides a low impact lower body workout. Depending on the course, biking can burn 500 to 1000 calories in an hour and it requires minimal training. Cycling is a fun form of exercise, and risk of injury can be minimized by wearing a helmet and choosing a route with minimal traffic.
Swimming is a low impact cross-training aerobic exercise which works all major muscle groups. Working against the resistance of the water helps to build endurance which increases metabolism for many hours after the exercise is finished. Swimming for 30 minutes will burn up to 400 calories, has a low risk of injury and is just plain fun.
Step aerobics provides a high intensity lower body workout which increases heart rate and lowers blood pressure, both contribute to lowered risk of heart disease. Step equipment is inexpensive and when combined with invigorating dance music, makes an ideal tool in your weight loss arsenal. Try joining a structured class for motivation and to meet new friends with a common interest.
Walking is the most popular form of exercise, as it appeals to all age groups and requires no special equipment. Studies confirm that walking at a moderate to fast pace lowers the risks of heart disease, diabetes, stroke and cancer when done for at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week. Although walking may not burn calories as quickly as other aerobic exercises, it does lead to steady weight loss, burning close to 200 calories in 30 minutes.
Fuel your weight loss regimen by combining a reduced calorie diet with an aerobic conditioning exercise program. For best results, find a family member or friend who can provide the necessary motivation you’ll need to make this a permanent lifestyle change. Exercise is the essential key to a slimmer you, and a healthier life.