Get a better workout

Ask any runner who’s naturally slim: There are a bazillion reasons to exercise that have nothing to do with losing weight. But if weight loss is your main motivator, make sure every minute of exercise counts with these tricks to burn more calories during exercise:

1. Clock more aerobic cardio. Any activity that permits you to talk but makes it difficult to carry out long conversations (i.e. aerobic exercise) is a secret weapon for weight loss, says Edward Jackowski, Ph.D., founder of EXUDE Fitness training programs and author of Escape Your Weight. Unlike weight lifting or uber-intense, unsustainably difficult activities (i.e. anaerobic exercise), most people can physically sustain aerobic exercise for long enough to burn a substantial amount of calories. It’s why anyone trying to lose weight should spend about 60 percent of their gym time on cardio and just 40 percent doing other stuff.

2. Actually work. Going through the motions won’t help you lose weight — even if you half-ass it for 45 minutes. “From a scientific perspective, it’s the intensity of exercise that raises the metabolism,” says Jackowski. Instead of worrying about your heart rate, stick with this rule of thumb: If you don’t feel winded and you have the capacity to step it up, you should be moving faster. So long as you tax you system, you’ll benefit just as much as someone who’s more fit and running faster than you on next treadmill.

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