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Burn fat fast: 3 workouts that will kick your butt

July 23, 2014 16:27 IST

Burn fat fast: 3 workouts that will kick your butt

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Brinda Sapat

Want to go all out with your training? Then HIIT is the name of your game!

These are raw, no frill workouts focussed on getting you the results. This is not for the faint hearted!

We are looking at the 3 popular forms: CrossFit, Tabata Training and Boot Camp

High intensity interval exercises are not suited for everyone. It places high demands on the body. Avoid it if you have problems related to the heart, lungs and breathing, joints, back pain; are pregnant or have any other medical condition.

Regardless, you must consult your doctor before beginning and remember to ALWAYS start easy. Please inform your trainer if you are new to exercise and if have any medical condition.

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Image: Image used for representational purpose only
Photographs: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

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CrossFit

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A workout that pushes your limits; CrossFit's tag line says -- Forging elite fitness. That basically refers to training like a professional athlete/sportsman.

CrossFit takes its cue from movements used in sport and physical tasks and bases exercises on these movements to improve performance. The movements are functional and performed at high intensity. This fitness form has gotten so popular that Cross Fit now has CrossFit Games where they crown the fittest man and woman.

The setting

Outdoors or indoor CrossFit gyms. You got to be ready to get dirty and sweaty. No AC's and pampering here! Usually no music played outdoors.

The exercises

CrossFit exercises include exercises like squats with barbells, kettlebell swings, rowing on a rowing machine, pull ups on the bar, push ups and squat thrusts on the floor, running, medicine ball throws with partners; to name a few.

What does it do for the body?

Loaded movement training like in the exercises above give you the advantage of cardiovascular training and strength training. It burns fat and builds muscle tone. It makes the body stronger overall and because it is functional in nature, it improves your general physical movement or of that in sport.

On the other hand, it does not focus on flexibility or building bulging biceps… so guys you will need to hit the gym for that!

Is it for me?

CrossFit is tough stuff! A great way to see what your body is capable of. If you are up for a challenge, sign up right away!

For those who enjoy the comforts of a medium paced workout, the gym, or a dance-y workout, it's probably not your thing.

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Image: Image used for representational purpose only
Photographs: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Tags: CrossFit

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Tabata Training

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Tight on time and need to burn it all? Read on for your perfect workout!

The focus is on cardio in this form of training. Tabata tags itself as "The world's greatest fat burning workout".

The principle behind it is to burn off the carbohydrates in the aerobic zone and then pushes you into the anaerobic to burn fat much more effectively than staying in the aerobic zone (as with traditional cardio workouts).

It originated as a 4 minute workout as a training add on for athletes, but is now done as a complete session for up to 30 minutes.

The setting

Can be done at home, in the gym, in a studio or outdoors. Any choice of music or special Tabata music with interval stoppage time is played.

Exercises

The Tabata training pattern is 20 seconds of all out exercise followed by 10 seconds of complete rest. This cycle repeats 8 times. You would do, say, squat jumps for 20 seconds, rest for 10, then mountain climbers for 20, rest for 10; and so on.

The exercises are basic, easy to follow so that one can really take the intensity way up.

What does it do for the body?

It burns fat and increases the oxygen uptake in your lungs and bloodstream. It strengthens your heart and lungs.

It does not focus on muscle strength, building muscle and flexibility.

Is it for me?

If you are time strapped and need to lose the fat; it's the one for you! Just remember to start off with easier exercises and also add on strength training and flexibility programmes.

It is a great cardio workout for anyone!

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Image: Image used for representational purpose only
Photographs: Mike Powell/Allsport/Gettyimages
Tags: Tabata

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Boot Camp

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Been around for a while, Boot Camp is still very popular. The exercises are based on intense interval military drills and the programme is designed to build overall fitness. Some Boot Camps use almost no equipment while others go as far as tyres and logs! What sets boot camps apart on another level is that there is a lot of social bonding and fun enhanced through team work.

The setting

Mostly done outdoors in parks or on the beach; making it a happy setting for social camaraderie. Some boot camps are also done in studios and gyms. Usually no music is played outdoors.

The exercises

Frog jumps, push ups, squat thrusts are interspersed with sprints and games. The exercises are easy to follow and allow you to take the intensity as high as you want. There is fun stuff in partners and teams too.

What does it do for the body?

It burns fat, increases muscle strength and body tone.
There isn't much focus on flexibility training.

Is it for me?

Outdoors, intense and social... if these words sound good to you, go for it!!

Prefer the dance workouts or pumping iron? Enrol at the gym!

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HIIT v/s Traditional Training

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Traditional training involves concentrated cardio and strength training where each one is done as a separate workout; while HIIT uses a combination of the two to sometimes yield more cardio and at other times more strength benefits.

Focussed traditional workouts allow you to concentrate and work through the full range at a more comfortable intensity. It builds muscle mass and tone. The cardio workouts done traditionally do not burn fat as effectively as in cardio HIIT.

HIIT combines the two working at high intensities, overloading both the cardiovascular and muscular systems. This builds integrated body strength.

Traditional training involves less wear and tear and a lower risk of injury. HIIT puts high demands on the various systems of the body and wear out is greater as is the risk of injury.

Make note!

Round off every workout with focussed stretching to increase flexibility. This is an overlooked aspect in both training methods and can result in joint stiffness and muscle sprains and tears.

The final word

Mix it up! Make your base the traditional workout and throw in a day of HIIT in the week. You get the best of both worlds with a lowered risk of injury.


Image: Image used for representational purpose only
Photographs: Abhijit Mhamunkar
Tags: HIIT

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