8 ways to burn fat and gain muscle

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Don’t be afraid to begin again in 2018. Maybe you lived in the gym at one point and fell off the wagon. Well, join the club — you are not alone. Instead of dreading going to the gym, start streamlining the process with these fun, super-fit and strong workout routines to burn fat and gain muscle.


  1. YOGA

I used to think this was glorified stretching…because that’s what it looks like. Practicing Yoga can be a fun and effective way to align the body and compress joints. In my experience, it has not been associated with or in conjunction with any type of worship (with your holy self). Yoga is especially helpful if you have frequent back, shoulder or joint pain. If you have trouble sleeping, evening yoga can help with that too.


2. Circuit Training

This is a fast-paced conditioning exercise that includes resistance movements with high-intensity aerobics. Every move is performed in fluid, rapid exercises to improve cardio-respiratory and increase muscles. Circuit training can include running (or cycling), lifting, lunges, burpees, squats, and more. In 30 minutes, you can burn between 500-700 calories, increase your endurance and strength. Most circuits are in groups, you do as many sets as you can at each activity then move on to the next. Over time you’ll get better and better and no one gets left behind.


3. Abdominal Training

Try doing 15 minutes of sit-ups/crunches/russian twists with your regular workout or while binge-watching your favorite Netflix show. Do this every day and you’ll start seeing amazing results. Quick and easy! Pinterest has a lot of easy, ab-terrific step-by-steps. Check them out here.


4. Exercise Ball Regimen

From wall sits and Pilates to mountain climbers, the exercise ball lets you improve balance and core stability while strengthening the body to be its best. Sitting on the exercise ball also shapes the posture, strengthens the core including trimming the waist. It’s also a great way to workout with low impact on knees and back. Check out #1 on PopSugar’s blog about whittling your middle here.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Megan Wolfe

5. H.I.I.T.

High intensity interval training (HIIT) is where you perform a brief rush of max or high-intensity exercises for 10 minutes followed by short low-intensity activities, and do this repeatedly, till you’re too tired to continue. Undoubtedly, the fastest and best way to lose weight! HIIT also takes the monotony out of just walking on a treadmill – and has better fat burning/lean muscle gaining potential than cardio.


6. Cardio Kickboxing

Combine kickboxing steps with upbeat music and fast-paced movements to experience a fun, high-intensity workout. With this one, there are multiple benefits including: learning practical self defense, increased heart rate which will burn fat and improve your balance and coordination. The boost in confidence from feeling stronger is a plus!


7. Weightlifting + Cardio 

For years, we were told lifting will make you top heavy, big and bulky. And now we know the science behind lifting – and that’s just not true. Lifting weights is an effective way to build muscle mass, which helps you burn more fat and look leaner. Weightlifting combined with cardio can also combat genetics by sculpting your figure, creating a smaller waist and defining legs and arms. Most HIIT and Circuit Training regiments incorporate this as well.


8. Nike+ Training Fitness App 

Not a gym person? Or you don’t mind going but don’t know what to do once you get there? Trainers can be expensive and this app is the perfect substitute – plus it can seamlessly sync to the music list on your phone. The Nike+ Training app encompasses everything from the list plus so much more. It’s easy to use and can confirm to a personalized training plan that you choose. Choose between “Start Up” (4 weeks of well-balanced workouts), “Lean Fit (6 weeks to get lean and fit), “Bodyweight Only” (4 weeks of strength training without weights) or “Gym Strong” (build full-body strength with 8 weeks of weight training). The app keeps track of your hard-work, encourages you and recommends exercises based on your fitness level. Most importantly, it’s free! Android download here or iPhone download here.

Don’t be afraid to be a beginner. If your prayer this year it to get healthy, all of these are great ways to get back in the game or change up your current routine.

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