So many people are looking to lose weight, but there is loads of conflicting advice out there about how to do it. Most people know that diet plays a major role in weight loss, but diet isn’t the only thing you can do if you want to lose weight, exercise plays a role as well. Particularly weight lifting. That’s why we assembled a list of the best exercises to lose weight with. They’re mostly simple to do and they will have a major impact on your weight loss goals over time.
Why Does Weightlifting Help with Weight Loss?
Weight training is important for losing weight because it helps increase the amount of muscle in your body. Muscle is very important for achieving different weight loss goals because it burns more calories than fat does. That means if you do the best weightlifting exercises consistently, you will increase the muscle mass in your body and the number of calories your body burns on a daily basis. However, please remember it is vital to make sure your diet is on point and you maintain a healthy calorie deficit in order to lose weight.
The Best Exercises Explained
We break down all the best exercises to lose weight into the different muscle groups throughout the body down below. For best results, you want to increase muscle mass in each part of your body to really enhance the fat-burning potential of your body in a big way.
As the largest group of muscles in your body, making your legs bigger and stronger is the best way to increase your body’s ability to burn fat. There is also some research that suggests that leg lifts in particular result in increased growth hormone levels and increase muscle gains throughout the body when accompanied by a full-body routine. Below are our favourite weight-loss lifts for your legs.
There are loads of different squats, but they all follow the same general movements. These muscle-blasting movements push your quads, hamstrings and especially your glutes to their limits to help with serious strength and muscle gains.
To do a squat put your feet shoulder-width apart. place a barbell across your shoulders and drop your butt back and down toward the floor like you’re sitting down in a chair. Be very careful to avoid curving your lower back, or putting your knees in front of your toes. Squats should feel natural and comfortable. As you get stronger you can add weight, or use a variation like the Sumo Squat to target other areas of the legs.
Romanian deadlifts are a powerful exercise for building up those hamstrings. It’s a deadlift motion that relies on a barbell and works wonders for back muscles, hamstrings, glutes and more.
Stand with legs shoulder-width apart with your legs just barely touching a barbell in front of you. Bend down by dropping your hips back and bending your knees slightly until you can grasp the barbell. Lift it straight up while maintaining a flat back.
Use your legs to drive the barbell upwards and avoid putting the strain on your back. Come to a standing position, then drop the barbell back down while bending your knees until it’s near the floor.
Repeat the lifting motion by driving your hips backwards and maintaining a flat back all the time to go through one rep after another.
Power lunges are excellent for leg and core strength, and they don’t require much space to do. They are hopping lunges that won’t have you moving from your spot.
Stand in a comfortable position with legs straight and body upright. Jump and split your legs so that one is forward and the other is back. While landing bend your back knee toward the floor and bend the front leg at a 90-degree angle with your knee facing forward. Pop back up and swap legs in the air so the front leg is in the back and the back leg is in the front.
Continue this movement to go through multiple reps. Take care to keep your back upright and your head looking forward. Record yourself to witness your form and to try and make the movement look more natural with practice.
Your back muscles are some of the most important in your body and they help with weight loss and picking things up when you build them up. Below are our favourite back exercises.
Deadlifts are one of the best back exercises that also work the legs and your arms at the same time. This movement must be performed carefully for safe results, so take care with it.
Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart and nearly touching a barbell loaded with an appropriate amount of weight. Bend down to pick up the weight while driving your hips back and maintaining a nice flat back. Your head should be in line with your back while grasping the bar.
Grab the bar, drive your hips forward to create the power necessary to lift up the bar. Be careful not to round your back during this movement, keep your arms slightly bent throughout the motion and don’t drop your butt down into a squatting position when grabbing the bar.
When you’re standing upright you’re halfway through a rep. Lower the weight back to the floor to complete your first rep.
Pull-Ups are well-known as one of the most powerful exercises for a strong back, and they don’t require access to any weights at all, you only need a horizontal bar at an appropriate height for you to start training your back muscles.
Reach up to the horizontal bar and grasp it with your hands shoulder-width apart and palms facing away from your body. Keep your legs straight and rigid and tighten your core and tense your entire body.
Squeeze your body upward by trying to pull your hands inward as you lift your torso up to the bar and then lower it back down. Stay nice and tight, don’t allow your body to swing and control the motion as best as you can.
The bent-over row is an excellent controlled workout for the upper and middle back muscles. To do it properly you stand with your feet should-width apart, and knees slightly bent. Drop your hips back into a slightly seated position and keep your back nice and flat. Grasp a barbell or a set of dumbbells and pull the weight to your torso by moving your elbows back behind your body.
Drop the weight back down in front of you while maintaining a flat back and the same leg position. Go through reps of this motion of bringing your elbows back and putting them forward again.
The chest muscles are large and powerful and one of the best to train when you want to build strength and lose weight. Below are the best exercises to lose weight for your chest.
Bench Press or Dumbbell Bench Press
The bench press is one of the best chest workout movements you can do. It works your pectoral muscles, triceps, shoulders and more.
Lay flat on a bench and grasp the barbell up above your head with arms slightly wider than shoulder-width. Lift it up off the rests and lower it down to your chest and raise it back up.
Keep your back slightly arched and focus on keeping your core tight. You can do the same movement with dumbbells, but you will have to rest them on your knees and then raise them up into the same lifted position to get started. There are loads of other dumbbell bench press variations you can perform as well. To work additional muscles, but these are the two basics you should start with.
Your shoulders generate much of your lifting force and are important for most everyday movements. They’re another important target when you’re looking to lose weight.
Barbell Military Press
This movement works all the shoulder muscles effectively, you must maintain a rigid back and good posture throughout it though. Stand upright with a barbell raised to your neck level. Grasp the bar with palms facing away and elbows down and close to the body. Lift the bar vertically so it is up above your head and then lower it back down to a position almost resting on your chest.
Overhead Dumbbell Press
This movement is very similar to the military press. You hold dumbbells in the same position. This time you grasp one dumbbell in each hand and lift straight up over your head and then back down again while maintaining a straight back and a tight core.
Best Exercises To Lose Weight fast Take Away
These are some of the best exercises for building muscle, increasing your metabolism and for weight loss. There are of course many variations of the above exercises, plus 100s of different ones targeting the same muscle groups. However, the exercises listed above should be your main focus and they have been proven time and time again to the very best for building muscle which will help lead to long term weight loss.
Like with nutrition, it’s important to have a plan and track your progress with weight training.
Check out these 3 routines below
- The Ultimate Training Plan For Beginners
- The Ultimate Push/Pull/Legs Routine
- The Ultimate 4 Day Split Routine
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Hi, I’m David and I believe absolutely anyone can achieve the body of their dreams. I’m a qualified health and fitness coach and have been helping clients achieve their dream bodies for 15 years. Whether you are looking to get beach body ready, compete in a bodybuilding show or simply to improve your confidence and wellbeing, I can help.