Spinning, whether it’s on an actual bike or a stationary one, is one of the best ways to burn calories and build endurance. Spinning is a great weight loss activity that is relatively low impact and targets the biggest, strongest muscles in the body. When you engage your biggest muscles, you set off hormones to produce more muscles, similar to strength training, which helps to burn fat across your whole body.
If you don’t like running, spinning is a low-impact alternative that’ll crank up your heart rate, but there’s more to pushing the pedal than speed. By practicing good form and engaging your core as well as your thighs and glutes, spinning can be a full-body workout. Whether you’re doing a heavy climb in first position or sprinting in second, your core is the key to spinning efficiently and quickly. And as you drive your foot down with each stroke, it’s all about squeezing your inner thighs.
Kickboxing is a great way to burn calories and fat, sculpt muscles—and get some serious stress relief! Nothing can knock stress better than throwing a punch. By driving power from your legs, your arms are able to throw major jabs, crosses, hooks and uppercuts, making it a full-body exercise. It will also test your coordination and endurance—all essential things that make you a better athlete in and out of the ring.
Women are quickly taking over the weight room, and you should get in on the action, too. Strength training can help you build lean muscle mass and rev up your metabolism, which starts to slow down once you hit your 30s. Maintaining muscle alone burns at least 30 calories per pound, but there are more reasons to hit the squat rack than just getting swole. Resistance training also helps prevent osteoporosis, bone grows in response to the forces that are placed upon it. So if you lift heavier, your bone grows stronger as a response. Deadlifts, anyone?
If grade school was the last time you picked up a jump rope, it’s time to get back into the swing of things. This calorie-busting workout can burn up to 318 calories, for a 140-pound woman, per 30 minutes and your heart isn’t the only muscle working hard. Jumping rope is essentially a full-body workout. Fire up your quads and glutes to help you explode from the ground, and engage your core to keep you upright and stable as you land back down to the ground. Jumping rope also involves a little arm and shoulder action, as they remain tight while the rope movement all comes from the wrists.