The only fitness gear you need to lose weight

Jennifer Blair

Wearing a weighted vest that’s 5% of your body weight can help you burn up to 4% more calories than you would without a vest.

When you're trying to shed a few pounds, exercise is a key part of the equation. But with so much fitness equipment on the market, it's hard to know which tools can actually help you burn the fat and which ones are a waste of time and money. You definitely want to keep your heart pumping, but it helps to build up some muscle, too. And because it's easy to feel discouraged when you're trying to shed pounds, it helps to have some tools that keep you invested in your workout routine.

Not sure which pieces of fitness gear to add to your arsenal? Here are some of our favorite fitness gear recommendations for people who are trying to lose weight.

Fitness tracker

Committing to a weight-loss routine often requires a lifestyle change, and getting more active is a big part of that. For most of us, being aware of how active we are -- or aren't -- can encourage us to go the extra distance, which is why a fitness tracker can be such a great weight-loss tool.

This handy device that you can wear on your wrist or clip to your shirt tracks the number of steps you take, the miles you cover, the calories you burn, and other fitness data, so you always know if you're reaching your fitness goals. Some fitness trackers also have a built-in heart rate monitor, which is really helpful when you're working out because it lets you know if you're reaching your target zone so you can burn as many calories as possible.

Fitness trackers work with apps, too, so you can easily keep track of all the data on your smartphone or tablet. Some apps even let you share data to encourage some friendly competition and help keep you committed to your fitness goals.

Recumbent exercise bike

When you're trying to burn fat, you want to incorporate a reliable cardio workout into your exercise schedule. A recumbent exercise bike is the perfect piece of equipment, particularly if you're new to working out. You can burn up to 400 calories per hour, and pedaling is easy on the joints to boot.

Recumbent bikes are designed to be more comfortable than other exercise or spin bikes, so you'll be able to push yourself and go for a longer workout. Even if you're not working out at full intensity, you'll still be able to burn plenty of calories to help shed the pounds.

You can also have fun binge-watching your favorite TV show or reading a good book when you're on a recumbent bike, so you can stay entertained enough to breeze through your entire workout.


Cardio is an important part of any weight-loss workout, but for the best results, you also need to incorporate some strength-training exercises. With a kettlebell, you have the best of both worlds -- heart-pumping cardio plus strengthening exercises for your upper body, lower body, and core.

Not convinced? A kettlebell workout can burn as many as 400 calories per 20 minutes, and exercises like the Russian twist, kettlebell squat, deadlift, and single-arm row can help build muscle for a leaner physique.

If you're new to these workouts, a 15- to 20-pound kettlebell is usually an effective choice for slimming down.

Weighted vest

To lose a pound of fat a week, you need to burn an extra 3,500 calories, so every little bit of exercise helps. With a weighted vest, you can easily bump up the intensity of any activity, so you'll burn more calories overall. Wear the vest while you go for a brisk walk or jog through the park, and you'll move even closer to your weight-loss goal.

But a weighted vest doesn't just help you burn more fat during a workout. You can also wear it when you're vacuuming or doing other chores around the house just to work in a little more exercise.

For the best results, start with a weighted vest that's approximately 5% of your body weight. Some vests are adjustable, so you can increase the weight as you get fitter and need a bigger challenge.

Wireless headphones

Sticking to a regular workout routine is crucial if you want to lose weight. But let's face it, exercise can get pretty boring after a while. Keeping yourself motivated is key if you're going to break a sweat every day, and music is one of the best ways to keep yourself going during a tough workout.

A pair of wireless headphones makes it easy to listen to your favorite tunes while you exercise without worrying about cords tangling you up. For vigorous workouts, make sure to choose a pair with ear hooks, so you don't need to worry about the earbuds coming loose on a run or bike ride.

Losing weight requires a commitment to both a healthy diet and regular workouts. It can be difficult, but if you choose the right fitness gear, you can make the process a bit easier and stick with your routine long enough to see real results.


Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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