500 Calorie Workout Routines
Working out is never easy and at times it can be downright demoralizing. You go to the gym at least three times a week, eat all the right foods and you even take the stairs at work. You do all of this in the hopes of losing a bit of weight and getting into better shape. At the end of the week, you decide to weigh yourself and take your body measurements. You’re feeling confident because you know you’ve put in the effort. But then you stand on the scales and nothing has changed. You take your measurements and you’re the same as you were last week. WHAT WENT WRONG?
In a fit of sheer frustration, you reach for a box of donuts. I mean what’s the point of all that diet and exercise if nothing changes? Right?
Before you open that box of donuts and devour the contents you need to know that you are not alone. People all over the world are going through the same dilemma. It’s not easy to dedicate so many hours working out every week, and saying “No” to our favorite foods. It’s doubly hard when you put in all that effort without seeing real results.
Don’t throw in the towel just yet. Chances are you simply need to change your workout routine from the traditional slow and steady routines, to something that will burn a whole lot of calories in a short amount of time. It’s not exactly going to be easy, but these 15 workouts that burn more than 500 calories per hour are sure to get your heart pumping and the weight shifting.
1. Circuit Training
Circuit training is perfect for those who don’t like repetition. This workout combines different exercises specifically for endurance and resistance training. In short, you go through a series of exercises in a fast-paced sequence with just a very short break in between. Once you complete the entire series of exercises, or circuit, you can start again.
The beauty of circuit training is that you can target all areas of your body – upper body, lower body, core and trunk or even complete body. In addition to burning 500 or more calories per hour, circuit training is also excellent for cardiovascular fitness and muscle endurance. You don’t necessarily need to hit the gym for circuit training and you can even put together your own set or circuit of exercises. However, if you’re a beginner, it may be wise to seek advice from a personal trainer.
If you’re looking at intensely sculpting your lower body then an hour on a StairMaster once a week will definitely do wonders for your calves, glutes, quads, and hamstrings. Depending on the level of intensity you set the StairMaster to, you can burn 500 or more calories per hour with relative ease. Actually, it’s not exactly easy. The StairMaster, while very effective, is also incredibly challenging. Correct posture is important to getting optimal results and it may take you a while to be able to complete a full hour on a StairMaster.
With a StairMaster, you’ll get a rigorous cardio workout and although it will be painful on your lower body at first, you will overcome the pain and see the results in a nicely sculpted and toned lower body in a short amount of time.
3. HIIT – High Intensity Interval Training
HIIT, or High-Intensity Interval Training involves alternating short, intense bursts of cardio style exercises with very short resting periods of a lower intensity that will definitely get your heart pumping. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to HIIT and no set duration. This workout routine is relatively flexible but you do have to commit. HIIT has become one of the most popular workout routines over the last decade or so and its popularity is still growing.
Depending on the intensity of your HIIT workout, you could burn up to 750 calories per hour. But the calorie burring benefits continue for an hour or so after you’ve stopped exercising. You can really personalize HIIT to suit your body shape and available time. The individual exercises can be changed so it will not get repetitive. In fact, changing the exercises will also challenge different body parts making it a great workout for those who want an all body workout, without too much repetition.
4. Boot Camp
If you really want to be put through your paces enroll in Boot Camp. Not the military kind, but the workout program. Boot Camp will really test your endurance and stamina and you will spend an hour doing things like pushes, squats, lunges and a whole lot more. The workout is modeled on what military personnel put their recruits through. It is ideal at building your overall body strength and vamping up your fitness levels.
In many ways, Boot Camp is similar to circuit training. You begin with stretching and running before moving on to interval training. The interval training not only involves different exercises but weights as well. Boot Camp is usually conducted in groups and the trainers will push all of their participants to the max. Some of the routines also involve teamwork, making this a perfect set up for social support amongst the participants. This is great for people of all shapes and sizes. In fact, the heavier you are, the more effort you need to put in to complete the exercises. This exertion will definitely help you shed 500 or more calories per hour.
5. Bikram Yoga
We all know yoga is a great way to relax the body and mind, while still getting some exercise. But did you know that Bikram Yoga can supercharge your body’s ability to burn calories? Bikram Yoga is often referred to as Hot Yoga. It combines traditional yoga stretches and techniques that flow seamlessly from one posture to another. However, the real calorie burning effect comes from completing the routine in a heated and humid room.
If you’ve ever practiced traditional yoga, then you are already aware of the many benefits of yoga. However, traditional yoga is very gentle, focusing more on stretching and core strength than burning calories. The founder of Bikram Yoga, Bikram Choudhury, has made a routine that is considerably more active and with the heated room, the calorie burning possibilities are super-charged. Depending on your physical condition, weight and abilities, you can definitely burn over 500 calories in an hour and you’ll still get the muscle toning, mind relaxing benefits we’ve come to love with yoga. So take your yoga mat, put on those yoga pants and start exercising.
If you love riding bicycles then you’ll love spinning. Spinning is essentially riding a stationary or assault bike but with added moves involved. Think along the lines of doing aerobics on a bike. These moves are designed to increase your heart rate and give you a really intense all over body workout.
The beauty of Spinning is that it is a great workout for beginners and seasoned pros alike. The specialized bikes used in Spin Classes can be calibrated to suit the strength and fitness levels of every exerciser. For this reason it is recommended that you get to your Spinning class a few minutes early so you can make any adjustments to the bike to suit your height and fitness levels. Get a group of friends together and enroll in spinning classes. You’ll be able to support each other, have lots of fun and easily burn through 500 calories in one short hour.
Something that is missing from physical education classes in schools these days are good, old-fashioned calisthenics. If you remember your gym teacher putting the whole class through an endless routine of push-ups, sit-ups, climbing, jumping and a whole lot more. Calisthenics are classified as bodyweight exercises. In essence, these exercises need a minimal amount of equipment but challenge you using your body’s natural weight.
While calisthenics may seem somewhat placid as a form of exercise, if done with enough enthusiasm and vigor, you can burn through a whole lot of calories. All you need to do is to keep moving from one lot of exercises to another. If you really put your heart into it, burning 500 calories within an hour will be a piece of cake. Go old school with calisthenics and feel the weight melting.
8. Back On The Track
If you excelled at athletics back in high school, why not get back to the track and start over again? Track and field sports involve a whole lot of running which is guaranteed to get your heart pumping and burning those pesky calories. But you don’t just have to keep running around the track. Add some hurdles for an added calorie-burning boost. To make it more interesting, take a stopwatch with you and time yourself. Once you have a base time you can challenge yourself to keep beating your original time.
This is one of those workouts that you can do any time of the day or night. If you don’t have a proper athletics field you can work on you can simply choose a path in your neighborhood. Getting outside in the fresh air will also help you burn a few extra calories and running will not become boring because you can choose a different route every time you set out. Put on your running shoes and running jacket, find yourself a running buddy and get even more enjoyment out of your workout.
9. Let’s Dance
If you want a workout that is a whole lot of fun, consider taking dance classes. Dancing requires an enormous amount of skills and coordination and if you choose the right styles, you can burn a whole lot of calories. You’ll also give your energy levels a serious boost, tone muscles you never knew you had and you’ll increase your flexibility and endurance levels.
The huge plus with dancing is that you can get your partner involved and make this something that is fun and beneficial to you both. If you’ve ever thought how sexy dance partners look in ballroom dancing, why not give it a try yourself?
If you like the idea of dancing, but want something that is more of a challenging workout as well, your local gym probably has a variety of different classes you can engage in. Zumba has been popular in recent years as it combines aerobics with Latino dancing. It looks simple enough, but you will feel a definite burn in your thighs when you first start out. Other dance styles have also made their way into the fitness circuit. You can dance like a star or a Bollywood dancer. The short, intense intervals are choreographed to give your whole body a workout and easily burn 500 calories per hour.
The diehard experts at the gym make rowing look really easy and it actually is. That is, until you’ve been at it for a few minutes. If you’re a novice you’ll start to feel a burn and you’ll be sweating like crazy in a really short time. Rowing machines are great for an allover workout because it engages your upper and lower body. This is an ideal way to lose weight as it is both a cardio workout and strength training. You can also intensify your workout by adjusting the resistance on the machine to a tougher level. Depending on your level of fitness and determination you can easily burn over 700 calories per hour if you really put your mind to it.
Don’t just stop at the gym though. Why not try actually rowing on water? There is no better motivation to get you rowing harder and faster than a bit of competition. Occasionally it will be a great way to alternate your workout if you exchange the rowing machines at the gym for a boat on the water.
If you’re looking for a workout that is relatively gentle on your joints but still a powerful way to burn calories then all you need to do is hit the pool. Depending on the style of swimming you prefer, and the speed of your swimming, you can get a pretty solid workout going and burn well over 500 calories per hour. Freestyle works really well but the butterfly stroke can also be pretty challenging. The water also adds that little bit of resistance you need to get the maximum results.
Of course, doing the same style lap, after lap can be a little dull so switch to a different swimming style after each lap. Swimming laps is relatively easy to do in any weather, particularly if you have indoor heated pools in your area so there is no excuse to be missing out on this all body, calorie burning workout.
12. Roller Blading
Working out doesn’t have to be all serious and if you like to let your inner child out to play once in a while you may just find rollerblading a lot of fun. Roller balding targets the abductor muscles of your inner and outer thighs. Over time you will have the ability to completely control your stride while rolling and these controlled movements are great for muscle strength and coordination. Plus when you engage your arms in varied swinging motions you can further add to your calorie burning efficiency.
So can you actually burn a decent amount of calories by simply rollerblading? Sure you can. Taking it easy as you glide around will burn in the vicinity of 500 calories. You can burn even more if you pick up the pace and get your arms involved. This is a great workout you can do indoors at your local skating center or take it outside to your local skate park or anywhere there are adequate paths like your neighborhood, popular beaches, etc.
13. Bike Riding
If you like cycling then grab your bike and head outdoors. Just like a stationary bike or spinning classes, you can get a really good workout by simply pedaling around your neighborhood. The true magic with bike riding is that you don’t need to be riding at break-neck speeds to get a good burn. Even a moderate amount of effort will burn up to 500 calories per hour and if you really want to go the extra mile and increase your speed you can burn a whole lot more.
Don’t limit your bike riding to just your neighborhood. Anywhere you can pedal has great possibilities for riding. Take your bike riding to the hills for a more varied workout, or take a scenic route somewhere along the coast. Just the act of getting outdoors alone will have a very positive effect on your mental health and you’ll get a great workout for your lower body.
14. Combat Sports
There is a reason why boxers, kickboxers and martial artists usually have ripped abs. First and foremost, they work out all the time. If you just want to get into the ring and spar with a fellow boxer you can burn anywhere up to 800 calories. All that bobbing, weaving and ducking must count for something. It takes a whole lot of energy to pursue your opponent around the ring, and just as much avoiding being hit.
Kickboxing ramps up boxing to a whole new level. You’re not only using your arms, but your legs as well. Plus, the motion of kicking your legs up high is a great way to focus on your ab muscles. If you can’t find a sparring partner, don’t sweat it. Even if you only practice with a punching bag, you’ll still manage to get a pretty intensive workout and release a whole lot of pent up frustration and tension.
Combat sports take quite a bit of skills and stamina so even if you don’t want to do it competitively, there is no reason you can’t just do the training. It can still be a fun workout and you’ll definitely be able to burn 500 or more calories per hour.
15. Jumping Rope
It’s low-tech, cheap and you can take it with you anywhere. A simple jumping rope is one of the easiest pieces of exercise equipment to use and probably one of the cheapest too. It seems like an easy workout and in reality, it is easy. It’s something most of us have already done dozens of times, even from an early age, and once you know how, you’ll never forget how to do it. Having said that, have you ever tried jumping rope for an extended period of time? If you can last a whole hour, you lower legs, particularly your calves will be incredibly sore and you’ll have sweat oozing out of you from head to toe.
There are a lot of workouts available these days that focus on using a jumping rope so you can keep alternating your routines to keep things interesting. You can incorporate your arms and legs into the routine and burn over 700 calories per hour, depending on the intensity level of your workout.
There are no hard and fast rules on what constitutes a workout and some of the ones we have discussed may not fit into the neat category of working out. However, if we look at working out as physical exertion than all of them definitely qualify. Working out shouldn’t be about constant repetition. Doing the same thing over and over again can become boring and result in a loss of motivation. By including lots of different activities and workouts, you’re more likely to stay active.
Keep moving and don’t limit your workout to indoors. Working out in the great outdoors will not only ensure you burn your 500 calories per hour, but all that fresh air and sunshine will do you a world of good too.
So next time you think you can’t really workout because you only have a few hours free per week, remember that you can burn 500 calories per hour with these great workouts that are challenging and fun.