If you’ve already chosen a diet for metabolism weight loss and are interested in supplementing it with exercise, there are a few keys to maximizing your workout benefits. To speed up a slow metabolism, it’s essential to increase your weekly exercise to place a higher demand for energy on your body. That energy comes from burning fatty acids stored in your body. Your goal is to turn your body from fat storing to fat burning, with aerobic exercise, muscle building exercise, and lifestyle exercise tricks.
Most cardiovascular exercise is also considered aerobic. It is designed to elevate your heart rate and burn calories. Remember that more is not always better. Pushing yourself too hard will tax your heart and muscles, fatiguing the body too quickly and making you too tired to sustain. You need to choose an activity you enjoy or will stick with, and set a challenging, but comfortable, pace you can sustain for 30 minutes. Examples of great fat burning aerobic exercises are:
- brisk walking
- using an elliptical machine or stair master
- jumping rope
- jumping on a trampoline
- taking an aerobics class
- climbing stairs
Muscle Building Exercise
Since muscle burns more calories on a daily basis, just by existing, building lean muscle mass will help boost your metabolism and burn body fat stores. Heavy weights are not necessary to build muscle. You can use light weights, your own body’s resistance, or resistance bands. By concentrating first on the large muscle groups in your legs, thighs, and back, you’ll call on the larger fat burning groups to do the most work up front. Examples of good muscle building exercises include:
- push ups
- chin ups
- bicep curls (with weights or resistance bands)
- bicep extensions (with weights or resistance bands)
- situps and crunches.
Lifestyle Exercise Tricks
In addition to setting aside workout time for exercise, you can slip little fat-burning activities into your daily activities to help you burn more calories each day. A few easy tricks to add exercise into your busy day are:
- taking the stairs instead of the elevator
- add a 15 minute walk to the end of your lunch hour or after supper in the evening
- park at the back of parking lots and walk the extra distance to work and stores
- use your bike to commute to work or to run errands
- schedule an outside activity like hiking, biking, or tennis as a weekend extracurricular activity
- snap a pedometer to your belt, and make a game of adding 25 more steps to your day, each day, until you reach a new goal you’ve set for yourself
To really tap into the fat stores in your body, it’s important to keep your food intake as nutritious as possible, avoiding saturated fats and processed sugars. All sugars and fats, whether healthy or unhealthy, saturated or unsaturated, contain calories. To lose weight and build fat-burning muscles, you need to fuel your body with low caloric foods that are high in nutrition. Foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein, eaten in smaller portions more frequently through the day, will keep your metabolism burning higher. It will also give you the energy you need for the extra exercise and muscle building you want to do.