What type of training is best for fat loss? | Training
If you scroll through your Instagram feed, if you are anything like me, you’ll see all these fitness enthusiasts doing so many different exercises claiming 'this is the best for fat loss' – squats, HIIT, LISS. How do you choose?
The beneficial part of exercise for fat loss is basically to increase energy expenditure. This means that your total calorie deficit, which is when the calories you consume are lower than the calories your body is burning, becomes greater. This encourages your body to find energy from elsewhere – the goal is to help our body get its energy from fat.
The most important key to achieving this is your diet. Although calories are not the ‘be all and end all’ to fat loss and health, they play an essential role in this process. Theoretically, the less we eat, the more calories we burn, the more we lose weight right?
If the calorie deficit is too large, then this can cause stress on the body and can even cause fat storage. To get this level right, I would recommend speaking to a professional nutritionist or someone who has a thorough understanding of these processes.
Next – the training part!
Everyone responds differently to different training styles. Some exercises encourage your body to get energy from certain places though. Different types of exercise are called Aerobic and Anaerobic exercises.
During Aerobic exercise, which involves low to moderate intensity exercises, your body uses oxygen, and continuously breaks down fat to continue providing enough oxygen for the body.
Aerobic exercises include walking, low intensity cycling, anything that has your heart rate between 40-65% of your maximum heart rate. These types of exercises increase your cardiovascular fitness.
During Anaerobic exercise, which involves high intensity workouts, your body quickly finds that oxygen cannot be provided fast enough to the muscles, and as such, has to use a different process.
Weights training, high intensity interval training, sprints, and anything that increases your heart rate over 65% of your maximum heart rate is considered anaerobic, and these types of exercise increase speed and endurance.
What's the Best Exercise Then?
As exercise intensity increases, the body begins to break down glycogen from the muscles. As glycogen is broken down, it produces lactic acid which builds up in our muscles causing muscle fatigue. It what causes that soreness you feel the next day. This means that we cannot continue to do this type of exercise for long periods of time.
To achieve optimal fat loss, both types of exercise are important. Anaerobic exercises usually require a higher, and longer lasting calorie burn after the exercise is completed – increasing the calorie deficit, compared to aerobic exercise which has little to no lasting calorie burn after you have finished exercising.
So what sort of exercises to pick? Whatever you like!
However, it’s best to try and get a combination of both. Walking, and carrying a heavy back pack with short bursts of sprints, weights training in the gym and a walk as well, high intensity function classes, swimming, whatever it is that you enjoy!
Exercise is different for everyone and it’s important to find something that you like. To get optimal fat loss results with exercise, combine a good diet as well!