Nutrition and maintaining a balanced diet is an integral part of losing weight and body fat. Unfortunately many fad diets don’t talk about the importance of regular exercise to help burn those extra pounds off. You must be burning more calories than you consume to create a small, but important calorie deficit on a daily basis which will result in weight loss. We all know that exercise requires effort and consistency that is why it can be tough for some people who are just starting out until exercise becomes a routine.

You might get discouraged if you can only run 10 minutes or so but remember to stay focused. You will build your endurance over time and the results will be well worth it. The first three months are the hardest for any beginners, but once it becomes a part of your daily lifestyle it will be a lot more enjoyable and easy. You should start off slow and steady with a positive attitude toward your weight loss goals by picturing yourself at your ideal weight. The mental reinforcement of your weight loss goals is just as important as your daily activities and diet.

Exercise can benefit you in many ways:

  • Increasing your energy levels
  • Boosting your metabolism
  • Conditioning your heart
  • Improving your overall fitness level and health

Once you begin a regular work out program you will guaranteed to build more muscle mass and endurance over time. The more muscle you build the better because muscle burns more calories than fat even while resting. This helps to speed up your resting metabolic rate, which will lead to accelerated weight loss.

A good mix of regular cardiovascular and resistance training is the answer

Alright, so now that we know all the benefits, the question is what type of exercise should you be doing and how often?  Well, there are a variety of different exercises to choose from, some involve cardiovascular training while others involve weight and resistance training.

Cardiovascular training increases your heart rate, works your lungs and circulatory system also known as aerobic training. Not only does it benefit the health of your heart and lungs, but it also helps to burn hundreds of calories per session.

Cardiovascular exercises include:

  • Walking
  • Running
  • Swimming
  • Cycling
  • Stair climbing
  • Elliptical trainers
  • Many other activities that requires whole body movement over a period of time

Maximum results in the least amount of time

To see maximum results with cardio training you must be moving at a constant speed for at least 30 minutes per session in your heart rate zone at least three times per week. If you have just started incorporating exercise into your daily routine start out easy for the first bit until your muscles begin to feel heavy then take a break. Once you have accomplished 30 minutes a day without feeling sore, try increasing the intensity of your work out. You can do this by going at your regular pace then gradually increasing the speed or resistance for a while until you feel your heart and muscles really working hard. This is what is known as “interval training”. This is the most effective type of cardio training, alternating between high and low intensities in one session. When you reach this stage of high intensity training, you are burning loads of calories and boosting your metabolism for a longer period of time.

Weight training is often misunderstood by many people in regards to its benefits and how it works your muscles and body. A lot of us think that weight training means bulking up and building up a large amount of muscle mass. This however is not the case for everyone who does weight training regularly. Lifting weights can also help you lose weight because it speeds up your metabolism and add more lean muscle mass to your body. Although weight training reduces your body fat and it’s a great way to sculpt your body, if you are still at least 20-25 pounds overweight you should not start weight training right away. The reason for this is that you may end up adding more muscle rather than losing the excess body fat that you have.

Tone your body with weight training and avoid weight loss plateaus

Once you are getting closer to your ideal body weight, you can start adding weight training to your exercise program which will help to tone your body. You should try changing your exercises often to keep your body guessing what muscle group gets a work out. This is important to avoid hitting a plateau with your exercise routines and it will also make it more challenging and interesting for you. Try combining cardio and weight training in one session to make things even harder for your body. It’s a proven fact that cardio and weight training in one session is a very effective way to lose weight. The key to losing weight with exercise is to always make sure that the level of intensity is high for at least 20-30 minutes of your workout and to you use proper form and technique while training.