15 Exercises That Burn More Calories Than Running from 15 Exercises That Burn More Calories Than Running

15 Exercises That Burn More Calories Than Running

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15 Exercises That Burn More Calories Than Running

How many calories the body burns is complicated science. The contributing factors range from height and weight to genes and fitness level. Two people who are seemingly the same in size and shape can use shockingly different amounts of energy doing the same exercise. People used to think that the only way to lose weight was to eat less and run more. But things are not so black and white. Doctors now know that starving leads to the opposite effect and short workouts are exponentially more effective than an hour on the treadmill. Whatever you do, know that you don’t have to sweat to prove that you are  working hard enough, according to Angela Gallagher, Certified Group Fitness Instructor and Certified Personal Trainer. “The reality is that sweating is not necessarily an indicator of exertion.”

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Kettlebell training

Kettlebell training has been shown to markedly increase aerobic capacity, improve dynamic balance and dramatically increase core strength by 70 percent, Angela Gallagher, Certified Group Fitness Instructor and Certified Personal Trainer, says. “Instead of being on the treadmill for half an hour and lifting weights for half an hour, kettlebells bring it all together in a short 20-minute program,” she adds. People burn an average of 13 calories per minute aerobically – jogging burns 7 – and more than 6 while resting.

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Stair climbing

“There’s no doubt that climbing stairs is an extremely effective way to burn calories,” Gallagher says.  “According to the 2011 Compendium on Physical Activities, stair climbing expends approximately 9 METs, the amount of energy expended while sitting at rest,” she adds. Walking at a comfortable pace is approximately 3.3 METs, which means that running stairs can burn about three times the number of calories then going for a walk for the same amount of time.

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Rowing

“Rowing recruits many muscle groups and can provide a total-body, cardiovascular and muscle-building workout that you should consider adding to your weekly exercise routine,” Gallagher says. It burns about 9 calories a minute. “Rowing is also impact-free and non-weight-bearing, which makes it even more appealing because you can work intensely without putting added stress on your joints. “Note that higher levels of resistance do not lead to a better workout. Begin with a setting between 3 and 5. This might feel light, but a lower setting will require you to be quicker in applying power through the ‘drive’ phase which will provide you with a more efficient workout," she adds.

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Burpees

A total-body exercise, the squat thrust (or burpee) is considered a “big bang for your buck” movement. Arm, legs, core and cardio—this one move takes care of it all. On average, you burn 10 calories a minute, Gallagher says. “But keep in mind that each person's fitness level and calorie burn is different.” “What makes the squat thrust graduate to the burpee is the addition of a vertical jump after you stand up. The burpee has also been known to sneak in a push-up after jumping back into the high plank position,” she adds.  

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Plyometrics

Jumping rope, jumping jacks and other plyometric exercises are incredibly effective for improving reactivity, power and coordination, while also increasing both the calorie burn – about 8 to 10 a minute – and challenge of your workouts, Gallagher says. And, while the intensity of these exercises means that participants need to be physically ready to do them, they should be a supplemental part of a well-rounded training program.  “With plyometric training, more is not better,” she adds.

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Step aerobics

Step aerobics is the gold standard. “Step involves a step that has adjustable risers to increase intensity. Classes are great cardiovascular workouts during which an average person will burn more than 450 calories in an hour. “The research-supported benefits of step training include cardiorespiratory fitness, weight management and mood enhancement,” she adds.

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Circuit training

You’ll burn a decent amount of calories — in a 1-hour circuit training session, a 150-pound person burns about 308 calories at a moderate intensity, and 573 calories at a vigorous intensity, Gallagher says. A circuit training she recommends is:  180 turns x 12, repeat other side; 8lbs squat press with abduction alternate x 16; Jacks/jump rope recovery; high knees 1 minute; air squats x32; 16 pushups with shoulder taps; air squats x 32; 16 pushups with shoulder taps.

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Tabata

Tabata can be a great workout, if done at the correct intensity,” Gallagher says. It’s a short workout – only 20 minutes – and it incorporates your total body, so it's working every muscle group that you possibly can. “Basically, if you work hard enough, even for just four minutes, you should be able to get into decent cardiovascular shape,” Gallagher says. Exercise for 20 seconds as hard as you can and rest for 10. Repeat for a total of 4 minutes. “It's the INTENSITY part that gets you into shape, not the four minutes,” she adds.

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Kick boxing

Kickboxing, also referred to as boxing aerobics and cardio kickboxing is a hybrid of boxing, martial arts and aerobics that offers an intense cross-training and total body workout, Gallagher says. “While some estimates of kickboxing's calorie burning potential have reached as high as 500 to 800 calories per hour, ACE-sponsored research suggests that only very large individuals working out at exceptionally high intensities are likely to burn that many calories,” she adds. Instead, a 135-pound person is likely to burn 350 to 450 calories during a typical 50-minute class that consists of a warmup-aerobic period, and cool-down.

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CrossFit

“Based on the high intensity of the workouts tested, researchers conclude that CrossFit does a really good job of helping exercisers improve their aerobic fitness, while burning a fair number of calories (about 500 an hour on average) in the process,” Gallagher says. “However, the intensity of CrossFit is not the workout for a 45-year-old person with multiple cardiovascular risk factors. Individuals need to be properly screened before beginning CrossFit,” she adds.

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Rock climbing

While rock climbing may not be the best option for those afraid of heights, it definitely is a killer workout. Climbing will challenge your strength and stamina—maybe even your bravery, too. The average person can burn anywhere from 750 to almost 1,000 calories in an hour, at high intensity, with minimal rest.

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High Intensity Interval Training

What do you get when you pair quick bursts of intense exercise with short rests or active recovery periods? Major calorie burn. A huge benefit to this type of workout is that it usually only takes about a half hour and the benefits last long beyond your 30-minute sweat session. Also, “one can expect greater increases in aerobic capacity than what is seen with traditional aerobic training,” Gallagher says.

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Elliptical

The total number of calories burned depends on how easy you make the workout – what resistance level you set and how fast you’re striding. Many instructors recommend the elliptical to other cardio machines because it’s a low-impact exercise. Your feet are always on the pedals making it easy on your joints and back. Guys can burn more than 1,000 calories in an hour on the elliptical and girls can burn more than 750, on average.

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Bike riding

Taking 10 minutes to ride your bike at a fast pace (14 to 16 mph) will burn about 92 calories. Incorporate hills and you’ll get an even bigger burn. And the same interval strategy mentioned for running and spinning applies here, too. An average 30-year-old woman will burn about 520 calories cycling for an hour. Also, spin classes and cycling are easy on the joints and serve as an amazing cardio workout, Gallagher says.

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Dancing

If your fitness routine is feeling a little dull lately, consider spicing it up by learning some new moves. Certain styles – such as Zumba, pole dancing, ballet barre and hip hop – torch calories.  You can have a blast while strengthening your bones and muscles, and improving your posture and balance. 

15 Exercises That Burn More Calories Than Running