While the only sure-fire way to reduce body fat is to keep your calorie consumption less than your energy output, there are certain types of workouts that, for most people, will help make losing fat and gaining muscle easier. 

You see, certain workouts, depending on what they consist of, tend to burn more calories than other types of workouts done for the same amount of time. 

For example, an hour of swimming laps in a pool is more physically exerting than, say, walking on level ground for an hour, and therefore, more calories will be spent. 

Movement of any kind, as long as it's pain-free, is going to be better for an individual than simply sitting on the couch. 

If you only have an hour each day to get your physical activity in, though, here are some of the best options. In just an hour, they give you more bang for your buck, so to speak, if your goal is to gain muscle and burn calories in order to lose fat.  

Strength Training

Strength training is probably one of the best, if not the single best, fat burners for men. Lifting weights as a woman is also incredibly beneficial. As mentioned, in order to lose fat, you have to burn more calories than you take in. 

In very simplified terms, think of exercise vs. food eaten. The thing about strength training, however, is that you don't just burn calories while you're working out, and then, once you're finished lifting, that stops. 

No, the longer you lift, the stronger you become, and being stronger means you have more muscle. The more muscle you have, the more calories you actually burn throughout the day, even at rest. 

This happens due to the nature of the muscle tissue and the fact that it takes more energy to support. Just make sure you're eating enough protein!


The acronym HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. High-intensity interval training is beneficial for lots of reasons, one of them, again, is getting a lot of bang for your buck. 

The HIIT style of training alternates between small durations of intense movement and short rest periods. Because of this structure, it allows you to burn a lot of calories in a shorter window of time. 

Whether you are starting out with bodyweight movements during these workouts or using movements with added weight, it is a great way to increase your strength while simultaneously getting your heart rate up.

Fasted Cardio

While this method of exercise can be considered controversial, with research on both sides of the coin, and has to be done appropriately, some studies suggest that fasted cardio can optimize fat loss. 

All fasted cardio means is that instead of taking in any calories before you go to the gym in the morning, you simply don't consume anything and do your cardio on an empty stomach. 

This type of cardio is generally considered 'steady state' cardio and consists of exercises such as walking, jogging, and using the elliptical for a longer extended period of time.

Mixed Martial Arts

This may not be your cup of tea, but mixed martial arts and Brazilian jiujitsu cannot go unmentioned. Taking part in either of these styles of classes, even at a novice level, is an absolutely insane workout. 

Jiujitsu, in particular, is a style of ground fighting that requires incredible intensity, strength, and conditioning, all wrapped up into one. 

Obviously, it will depend on your size, but when participating in sparring during these classes, it is easy to burn nearly a thousand calories just in an hour session.


It's never too late to start on your path to losing fat and gaining more muscle. 

Whether you're a novice to working out or someone with many years already under their belt, there are a lot of options out there to try for the first time or to add to your current routine.


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