Long story short, because these exercises use tons of muscle they burn more calories and crank up your metabolism much more than "isolation" exercises like sit-ups or bicep curls.
These 4 crucial exercises are crucial because:
- More muscles used =>more energy(calories) used during workouts.
- Heavier weights lifted=>more intensity=> better for building/maintaining muscle with the pleasant side effect of burning more calories throughout the day.
- They are often neglected, which makes them all the more necessary.
- BONUS: Day to day life gets easier-carry groceries up the stairs, chase after your kids for hours, and do household chores without getting out of breath.
Now that's out of the way, here are your exercises and free fat loss workouts!
Too often people work the mirror muscles and neglect their beautiful backsides.
Kettlebell swings strengthen and develop the “go” muscles predominantly (hamstrings, glutes, back, shoulders), but work some of the “show” muscles in the process (abs, forearms, quads).
Done explosively, kettlebell swings will get your heart racing leaving you drenched in sweat and glory sooner rather than later.
Another reason this is such a great exercise for fat loss is that it allows you to work really hard with minimal joint stress. Doing a bajillion jump squats might get your heart rate up, but it’s not a great long term solution for the knees.
- Hike the bell towards your zipper
- Right before the bell crashes into your nether regions, think “butt back/chest up” bringing your junk to safety
- Standup, rooting your feet into the ground, tightening your thighs and popping your hips forward. Let the bell float forwards and upwards (the height isn’t important)
- As the bell descends guide it towards your zipper again
- Hands are hooks, arms are ropes i.e. Arms shouldn’t be doing any work.
Any squat will do, but you should probably get beastly at goblet squats first. Beastly means 5 sets of 10 with 80-90lbs.
Squats are another move where you use every muscle in your body. After you spend the time learning what good form looks and feels like, this lift allows you to safely do high reps with heavy weights, and push yourself in a way that’s unique to squats.
Oh yeah, you’ll get really strong and muscular in the process.
- Root feet into the floor
- Abs should feel tight, like you’re about to take a punch to the stomach
- Drive your knees out and squat in between your legs, not behind them
- Sink as deep into the squat as you can without back rounding or your heels coming off the floor.
Weighted carries will get you stronger (sensing the theme here yet?) and have the more direct carry over (get it?!?!?) to everyday life than any other movement I know.
The technique is simple. Pick up something heavy and go for a long walk. Literally. That’s it.
If you aren’t worried about dropping the weight, it’s too light.
Doing these just once a week will cause a dramatic spike in the strength of your other lifts and quality of life outside the gym. My bet is your posture will also improve substantially; you’ll stand taller and prouder during your next meeting or first date.
Another “secret” to fitness is ground work. Bear crawls will help you find lots of muscles you didn’t realize you had, in effect strengthening any “weak links” that might be holding you back. They also provide a huge metabolic hit and are generally pretty sucky to perform.
Oh yeah, also oodles of core strength. OODLES!
- Stabilize the back by keeping the hips level as if you were trying to balance a book on your low back--you want your torso to be “planked”
- Take wee little footsteps
- Make the movement as fluid and graceful as you can
- Slow down partner. Speed is not the goal here.
Now, all of these lifts are amazing in and of themselves for building a lean, athletic physique. However, the real benefit comes from doing them side by side.
Here are 3 FREE sample workouts to get strong, burn fat, and feel like a badass.
- A1 Kettlebell Swing- 10 x 10
- A2 Goblet Squats- 10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1
- A3 Farmer Walks- 10 x 100 ft
A4 Bear Crawls- 50 ft, or 100 ft if you feel like showing off
- A1 Kettlebell Swing- 5 x 20
- A2 Bear Crawls- 5 x 50 ft
- B1 Goblet Squats- 5 x 20
B2 Farmer Walks- 5 x 50 ft
- A1 Goblet Squat 5 x 10
- A2 Bear Crawl- 5 x 50 ft
- A3 Kettlebell Swing 5 x 10
- A4 Bear Crawl- 5 x 50 ft
- A5 Farmer Walks- 5 x 200 ft
Hope you “enjoy” these workouts! Please feel free to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about these workouts or fitness nonsense in general. I’d love to hear what you have to say :)