The Top 10 Fat Loss Workouts of All-Time
The Top 10 Fat Loss Workouts of All-Time
By BJ Gaddour, CSCS
CEO of StreamFIT.com
Voted as One of THE 100 FITTEST MEN OF ALL-TIME by Men’s Health Magazine
If you want to get shredded, you need a training plan that uses a targeted combination of:
a.) Metabolic Resistance Training: Perform alternating timed sets (supersets, trisets, circuit, complexes) of non-competitive exercises that collectively work your whole body with little to no rest between movements. Classic bodyweight training movements like push-ups, planks, bridges, squats, lunges, pull-ups, and rows are ideal for MRT and will help you build the lean, ripped physique of a gymnast. If you want more muscle and have already mastered your bodyweight, shift your focus to external loading via dumbbells, kettlebells, and sandbags for classic strength training exercises like squats, deadlifts, lunges, presses, rows, and curls (yes, curls). Best results will always occur with a healthy mix of body weight training and external loading.
b.) Cardio Interval Training: Use one or more whole body movements performed at high velocities and intensities for a variety of anaerobic work to rest periods. Sample exercise modes include:
-Kettlebell Swings Variations (Click HERE for 85 Different Ways to Perform Kettlebell Swings)
-Kettlebell Olympic Lifting Variations: Snatches, Cleans, High Pulls, Push Presses, Jerks, etc.
-Burpee Variations (Try the Bad-A$$ Burpee Bootcamp Workout TODAY!)
-Ultimate Sandbag Core Training/DVRT: Snatches, Cleans, High Pulls, Shoveling, Shouldering, Rotational Lunges, etc.
-Resistance Band Training (RBT) Locomotion Drills (Do The 10-Minute RBT Rapid Fat Loss Cardio Workout NOW!)
- Integrated Upper and Lower Body Plyos (TRX Squat Jump Variations)
-Battle Rope Undulating Waves Variations
- Med Ball Slams, Rotations, Throws, and Tosses (Click HERE for an amazing 4-minute med ball workout)
-Running and Hill Sprints
Now that you know which training styles and exercise options will work best to burn body fat fast, here are the top 10 metabolic workout templates that I’ve used to shred myself and thousands of others over the years. Enjoy!
1.) Max Effort Intervals: 10-20 Second Work Periods
The higher the intensity, the more change you can create within your body. Maximum training intensity peaks within 5-10 seconds of all-out work and starts to taper significantly within 10-20 seconds of max effort. The harder your work, the more rest you need between sets/rounds so to sustain this level of maximum intensity you need complete recovery. However, complete recovery means resting 3-5+ minutes between sets which is certainly not optimal for fat loss. Meet in the middle by opting for a positive work to rest ratio of at least 1:2 (20-40 interval) and ideally 1:5 for best results (10-50 interval). You can also perform alternating sets of non-competitive exercises to further lengthen your rest time between movements for more complete recovery and thus higher subsequent training intensities.
Outlined below are the best applications for these max effort intervals:
a.) 10-50 Sprint Intervals: This is pretty straight forward- sprint for 10 seconds followed by 50 seconds of rest. That’s 1 round. Perform at least 5-10 rounds and upwards of 20 rounds for best results. Mix up the terrain (grass, track, sand) and the angles (flat surface, slightly inclined ramp for resisted running, slightly declined ramp for assisted running, hills, etc.) to train different muscles and keep your muscles and metabolism guessing. It goes without saying that running is a very high-impact activity and should be reserved for very fit individuals within 5-10 lbs of their ideal bodyweight. Running up hills does take a great deal of the impact off your joints so consider starting there or using the other lower-impact options outlined below.
b.) 10-50 Power Intervals: Similar concept to sprinting except you’re using plyometric bodyweight exercises like squat jumps and plyo push-ups or loaded power training moves like kettlebell swings and jumps. It’s critical to choose a training load (or exercise variation for bodyweight moves) that allows you to get no more than 10 reps in 10 seconds but no less than 5 reps in the same amount of time. Every move is performed with light to moderate loads/tensions as fast as possible without pausing at any point during each rep to best engage the stretch reflex and take advantage of the elastic nature of your muscles and connective tissues.
Outlined below is a sample 10-50 (10 seconds of work, 50 seconds of rest) power training circuit:
1- Kettlebell Swings Variation
2- Plyo Push-ups Variation
3- Squat Jumps Variation
4- Plyo Row or Pull-ups Variation
5- Skater Jumps Variation
6- Rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle. Perform 3-5 total cycles.
If you have a problem taking so much rest, simply add filler drills like corrective stretching and self-massage (foam rolling) during the 50-second rest periods to make the time pass faster and get extra recovery work in.
c.) 10-50 Isometric Intervals: The isometric component of a given rep of any exercise is typically the most overlooked. Though there are certainly times when you don’t want to pause during a rep when training for max power and elasticity as mentioned previously, most other times building isometric strength during certain ranges of motion of an exercise can mean dramatic increases in muscle size and strength. For example, every move has a sticking point or break point where you’ll struggle the most like the bottom of a push-up or 1-leg squat or the chin-up with 90-degrees of elbow flexion. Unfortunately, the only isometric work most people typically do is 60-120 seconds or longer at a time which will only build endurance, not strength. Plus, there’s more to life than just planks and bridges. Take any movement you want to get better at or master and find your area(s) of greatest weakness and hold them with everything you’ve got for 10 seconds for maximum muscular tension and activation. Don’t just tense the primary working muscles, try to get your whole body involved. If it’s too easy, tense your muscles harder, choose a more advanced exercise variation, or increase the loading (or add external loading for bodyweight moves).
Outlined below is a sample 10-50 (10 seconds of work, 50 seconds of rest) max effort ISO’s circuit:
1- 1-Leg Squat Hold at Sticking Point (L)- hip crease just beneath knee crease with thigh parallel to floor
2- 1-Leg Squat Hold at Sticking Point (R)- hip crease just beneath knee crease with thigh parallel to floor
3- 1-Arm Push-up Hold at Bottom (L)
4- 1-Arm Push-up Hold at Bottom (R)
5- Chin-up Hold at Top
6- Rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle. Perform 3-5 total cycles.
d.) 15-45 and 20-40 Intervals: These timelines can apply to all 3 previous approaches and is best suited for moves that are more elaborate in set-up or performance or drills that require greater time under tensions and stability. Some examples include TRX squat jump variations, intricate kettlebell/sandbag ballistics like cleans, push presses, and jerks, and unilateral power exercises like split jumps, 1-arm kettlebell swings, or staggered kettlebell swings.
Furthermore, if the goal is to increase starting strength and muscle work, the longer 15-20 second work period can allow for a 4-5 second hold at the bottom of each rep to eliminate the stretch reflex and allow for a solid 3-4 reps within that time frame. Clearly, 5-10 seconds more work and 5-10 seconds less rest will result in a greater direct calorie burn and heart rate elevation for those who feel like they can’t get in a great workout without feeling super sweat, sore, and tired. Trainees who are older, out of shape, or who have never trained power will also do better with longer 15-20 second work periods at first.
Though it is true that you do not burn nearly as many calories during max effort intervals with complete recovery, you will burn the most calories post-workout as these purely anaerobic work periods create a massive oxygen debt and metabolic disturbance. These intervals also target your powerful fast-twitch muscle fibers which have the biggest impact on daily calorie-burning and metabolic rate. Hitting these fibers hard is also the key to preventing the age-related loss of muscle that leaves you weak, slow, and soft in your golden years. And the coolest part in my opinion, is that power training makes your muscles always look rock-hard as if you’re constantly flexing (even though you’re not).
Finally, if you are really after faster weight loss, accompany these 10-20 second work periods with an equal 10-20 seconds of rest. You certainly won’t be able to train with as much overall training intensity on each move but the increase in training density (work per unit of time) will accelerate calorie-burning and fat loss during the training session in a big way.
If you’re looking for a 15-minute fat-blasting power workout you can do at home or in a hotel room, check out these 2 streaming follow-along workout videos:
2.) Strength Intervals: 30-Second Work Periods
Strength interval training uses heavy loads/tensions moved in a more slow, controlled fashion for 30-second work periods to build total body strength and lean muscle mass. Plus being able to handle heavier loads and tensions results in using heavier loads on your power and endurance workouts which in turn boosts those muscle qualities as well. Strength is a skill that needs to be trained, mastered, and maximized if you want to look like you actually workout on the regular.
One of the biggest mistakes people make with their training plans is focusing on getting marginally better at a bunch of different exercises versus getting dramatically better at a select few. If you want to get really strong and really fit, get laser-focused on the following 3 strength moves that you can do anytime, anywhere:
1. 1-Arm Push-ups and Other Push-up Variations
2. Weighted Chin-ups and Other Pull-up Variations
3. 1-Leg Squat and Other Squat Variations
It can sometimes be a tough sell to someone who just wants to be lean to prioritize getting stronger. But think about it this way: if you can do 1-arm push-ups your body can handle any other push-up variation thrown its way with ease. And the more 1-arm push-ups you can do the more 2-arm push-ups you can do. This same rationale applies to the positive impact that 1-leg squats will have on 2-leg squats and that weighted chin-ups will have on bodyweight chin-ups and rows.
There’s no denying that higher rep endurance training delivers the most fat loss NOW. However, getting stronger will mean you can do more reps on just about any other exercise in addition to using heavier loads and more advanced exercise variations during traditional fat loss workouts. The end result is more total work completed and more calories burnt per minute during any training session. The bottom line is that getting stronger will increase the size of your metabolic engine allowing you to guzzle body fat at ridiculous rates that you’ve never experienced before.
The good news is that not only do 30-second work periods make you stronger but they are also deadly to your body fat stores for the following reasons:
- Ideal time-under-tension for muscle growth (hypertrophy) and thus boosting resting metabolic rate (the calories you burn at rest).
- Ideal work period to burn the sugar stored in your muscles (glycogen) to enhance total body fat-burning both during rest periods and post-workout.
Here’s a sample 30-30 (30 seconds of work, 30 seconds of rest) strength intervals circuit:
1- 1-Leg Squat/Pistol Variation (L)- Modify by sitting onto a box/step or with upper body assistance (TRX)
2- 1-Leg Squat/Pistol Variation (R)- Modify by sitting onto a box/step or with upper body assistance (TRX)
3- 1-Arm Push-up Variation (L)- Modify with hand-elevated 1-arm push-ups, eccentric-only, or assisted 1-arm push-ups
4- 1-Arm Push-up Variation (R)- Modify with hand-elevated 1-arm push-ups, eccentric-only, or assisted 1-arm push-ups
5- Weighted or Bodyweight Chin-ups Variation- Modify with assisted chin-ups, eccentric-only, or bodyweight rows
6- Rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle. Perform 3-5 total cycles.
If you want more strength, use the heaviest loads you can handle in a slow, controlled manner for about 4-6 reps in 30 seconds
If you want more muscle/fat loss, use moderate loads performed continuously for about 8-15 reps in 30 seconds (the typical bodybuilding rep-range).
If you want extreme fat loss and conditioning, cut the rest periods down to just 15 seconds and you’ll freak the fat out.
If you’re looking for a 15-minute fat-blasting strength workout you can do at home or in a hotel room, check out these 2 streaming follow-along workout videos:
30-second work periods also work great for rapid fat loss cardio training that you can do on off-days between strength workouts. Simply select one of the total body exercises we mentioned earlier and get to work. Here are the 3 classic ways to structure these cardio workouts:
1- 5-minute warm-up, 30-90 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:3 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
2- 5-minute warm-up, 30-60 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:2 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
3- 5-minute warm-up, 30-30 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:1 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
You can employ a density progression by starting with the 90-second rest periods and gradually reducing your rest periods to 30-second while maintaining (or ideally increasing) the training intensity of each work period.
Or you can use heavier loads and more advanced exercise variations for the 90-second rest periods and lighter loads and more basic exercise variations for the 30-second rest periods (and everything in between for the 60-second rest periods).
The choice is yours and it all works!
For some 10-minute 30-30 rapid fat loss cardio workouts you can do on off-days between strength workouts, check out these videos:
I absolutely love doing 30-30 swing intervals for this because it’s very low-impact, develops the posterior chain, and seems to enhance my performance on push-ups, squats, and pull-ups.
Plus, the longer 30-second work period allows you to perform more elaborate swings variations like walking swings which will really accelerate your heart rate and metabolic rate.
Outlined below are 6 different 15-minute 30-30 swing interval cardio workouts that I think you’ll love:
You can also combine all 6 of these routines into a single SWING-A-THON to burn well over 1,000 calories. It’s a total sweat fest that’s an ideal challenge for advanced trainees or to serve as damage control before a big day of eating (Thanksgiving Day) or before or after a cheat meal.
3.) Endurance Intervals: 60-Second Work Periods
Endurance intervals use light to moderate loads in a more slow, controlled fashion for 60-second work periods to improve muscular endurance and cardiovascular conditioning. In addition, increased endurance via higher-rep training means you will recover faster between sets and workouts meaning it will translate into enhanced performance during your more intense strength and power workouts. Lastly, the exercise selection is designed to improve joint stability and connective tissue strength to bolster your knees, back, and shoulders and reduce the risk of injuries.
Here’s a sample 60-30 (60 seconds of work, 30 seconds of rest) endurance intervals circuit:
1- Step-up Variation (L)
2- Step-up Variation (R)
3- Unstable Push-ups Variation or TRX Atomic Push-ups Variation
4- Bodyweight Rows or TRX Rows Variation
5- TRX Leg Curl Variation
6- Rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle. Perform 2-4 total cycles.
60-second MRT intervals are the perfect example of “strength cardio” as you’re heart rate will be up the entire workout and you’ll be crushing calories non-stop.
Again, if you want extreme fat loss and conditioning, cut the rest periods down to just 15 seconds and then it gets REAL!
If you’re looking for a 15-minute fat-blasting endurance workout you can do at home or in a hotel room, check out these 2 streaming follow-along workout videos:
And here’s an amazing TRX Suspension Training Burpee Challenge using 60-second work periods:
You can follow-along to the full 10-minute fat-blaster HERE:
Like with 30-second work periods, 60-second work periods are awesome for rapid fat loss cardio training that you can do on off-days between strength workouts. Simply select one of the total body exercises we mentioned earlier and get to work. Here are the 3 classic ways to structure these cardio workouts:
1- 5-minute warm-up, 60-180 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:3 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
2- 5-minute warm-up, 60-120 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:2 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
3- 5-minute warm-up, 60-60 intervals for 20-30 minutes (1:1 work to rest ratio), 5-minute cool-down
You can employ a density progression by starting with the 180-second rest periods and gradually reducing your rest periods to 60-second while maintaining (or ideally increasing) the training intensity of each work period.
Or you can use heavier loads and more advanced exercise variations for the 180-second rest periods and lighter loads and more basic exercise variations for the 60-second rest periods (and everything in between for the 120-second rest periods).
Those definitely are some long rest periods, so add corrective fillers like stretching, mobility/activation work, or foam rolling to accelerate recovery and make the time pass faster.
ENTER SWEAT AND STRETCH!!
Perform 60 seconds of a move that makes you sweat and then 60 seconds of a move that gets you stretched. 30 minutes later you’ll be a sweaty lil’ beast with energy for days and ready to take the world by storm! Best done immediately upon waking.
This has been a key part of my own training program for some time now. The best way to describe this training template is as the new and improved way to do additional “cardio” to boost your fitness results.
Personally, I pretty much do some variation of this nearly every morning immediately upon waking to loosen up, sweat it out, and crank up my energy so I can crush my daily workload. Then I typically do my high-intensity workout in the afternoon after I’ve completed all of my critical work for the day.
Please note that this is just what works for me and I’m not saying you have to train twice a day. However, I will say that since utilizing this training split I have never been so lean nor felt so good and my recovery between workouts is super speedy. I should also add that this is my go-to hotel room travel workout when I’m really run-down, stressed out, and in need of a big-time pick me up on the road!
What I love most about this routine is that it leaves you feeling unbelievably energized and invigorated. Remember, not every workout needs to absolutely crush you. In fact, one of the signs of a great workout is that you feel better after having done it.
Here’s how it works:
- Perform 60 seconds of a move that makes you sweat and then 60 seconds of a move that gets you stretched for 30 total minutes.
- The “sweat” moves consist of a mix of bodyweight strength, cardio, and core calisthenics to burn calories, increase heart rate, lubricate your joints, and heat up your muscles.
- The “stretch” moves consist of a mix of corrective self-massage drills with a softball and foam roller plus some high-priority static stretches that focus on opening up your hips and upper back.
- This is also an amazing active recovery workout on “off-days” between high-intensity workouts that leave you really sore and tired.
- Outlined in the image below is the exercise list for your reference:
Here’s a pic of me at the end of the workout to make it clear just how sweaty you’re gonna get in just a half hour:
Enough talk, now get to sweating baby
Try the 3 SWEAT AND STRETCH follow-along workout videos below:
Complexes are the official body fat kryptonite.
A complex is where you perform 2 or more exercises consecutively without resting between movements using the same training tool (bodyweight, TRX, dumbbell, kettlebell, sandbag, battle rope, med ball, etc.).
No rest between moves results in a fierce fat-frying flow that will lean you out and cut you up faster than you ever thought possible.
One of my favorite complexes is something I call the MAD MINUTE:
- Perform 20 seconds of work for 3 consecutive bodyweight moves back-to-back-to-back.
- Then rest for a minute- that’s 1 cycle
- Perform 15 total cycles for one serious 30-minute metabolic boost.
You can group these 3 moves in one of the 2 following ways:
Group 3 non-competitive movements that work your whole body. For example:
3- Squat Jumps
1- Push-up Jacks
2- Seal Jacks
3- Squat Jacks
This grouping is best for fat loss and conditioning.
Group 3 competitive movements that work the same movement pattern or muscle/groups. For example:
1- Side to Side Push-ups
2- Judo Push-ups
3- Push-ups to Planks Transfer
1- Split Jumps
2- Skater Jumps
3- Squat Jumps
This grouping is best for muscle growth and endurance.
Be sure to take the FULL 60 seconds of rest. It allows you enough recovery time so you can really dig down deep and push yourself to the max for each complex. Again, foam roll or stretch during the rest periods to stay busy and make the time fly by.
Try THE MAD MINUTE METABOLIC MELTDOWN here:
And here are 2 additional MAD MINUTE muscle workouts for some new age bodybuilding:
The MAD MINUTE is probably my favorite workout ever. But, this next workout is the toughest one that I know of!
5.) The Metabolic Matrix
The expression “simple, but deadly” could not apply more to the following 12-minute workout featuring one of my favorite fat loss training templates called “THE METABOLIC MATRIX.”
Here’s how it works:
- Perform 30 seconds of work for each of the following 6 moves with no rest between them:
1- Step-up Variation (L Leg)
2- Step-up Variation (R Leg)
3- Cross-Body Push-up Variation
4- Jump onto Bed Variation
5- Rolling Plank Variation
6- Runners on Bed Variation
- Then rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle.
- Perform 3 total cycles for a 12-minute total body workout. If you want a longer workout, perform up to 8 total cycles.
Simply visit the link below to instantly download this workout video as an .mp4 or .mov file HERE:
You can also stream this belly fat-buster of a workout (and 2 other routines) HERE:
Here are a couple of other sample METABOLIC MATRICES using different training tools:
1- DB Overhead Press
2- DB Hip-Hinge + Row
3- DB Alternating Reverse Lunges
4- DB Alternating Lateral Lunges
5- DB Push-ups
6- DB Push-up Position Rows
1- KB 1-Arm Thruster (Squat to Press)- Left Side
2- KB 1-Arm Thruster (Squat to Press)- Right Side
3- KB 1-Arm Swing- Left Side
4- KB 1-Arm Swing- Right Side
5- KB 1-Arm Clean + Reverse Lunge- Left Side
6- KB 1-Arm Clean + Reverse Lunge- Right Side
1- Sandbag Overhead Shouldering
2- Sandbag High Pulls
3- Sandbag Shoveling
4- Sandbag Rotational Lunges
5- Sandbag Squats (Bear Hug or Zercher Position)
6- Sandbag Burpees
The fat-burning secret behind this training template is that you perform high-intensity work for 3 straight minutes followed by a 1-minute rest. Yep, it’s just like a round of boxing and it will fight the fat off like clockwork.
6.) Boxing Intervals: 3 Minutes On, 1 Minute Off
Boxing intervals have been used to develop some of the most lean and conditioned athletes the world has ever seen. As they say, the proof is in the pudding.
Simply work as hard as you can for 3 straight minutes, rest for a minute, and then wash and repeat for up to 15 total rounds.
It’s also the most versatile interval ever. Here are just a few ways that you can build boxing interval workouts:
Option A- Select a Single Exercise: Simply punch, hop, kick, squat, lunge, dodge, etc. for 3 straight minutes.
Option B- Supersets- Pair 2 non-competive movements and alternate back and forth between them every 30 seconds for 3 straight minutes. The best combinations are upper body/lower body (e.g. push-ups and squats), unilateral L/R (split squats L/R), and push-pull (push-ups and rows).
Option C- Trisets- Pair 3 non-competive movements that work your whole body and perform each one for 60 seconds for 3 straight minutes. The best combinations are upper body/lower body/core (e.g. push-ups, squats, and leg raises), unilateral L/R and bilateral (split squats L/R and burpees), and push/pull/lower body (push-ups, rows, and lunges).
Option D- Metabolix Matrix (see above in #5)
Clearly you could keep creating many more calorie-killing concoctions but the end result would be the same- an amazingly sweaty workout that will improve both your anaerobic and aerobic conditioning like crazy.
Are you ready for a SWEAT STORM?? Try this 40-minute boxing intervals workout using only your bodyweight TODAY:
7.) MMA Intervals: 5 Minutes On, 1 Minute Off
If you want to look like a fighter, train like one. Like boxing intervals, MMA intervals are based on the work to rest ratio found in an MMA fight.
Work hard for 5 minutes, rest for a minute, and repeat up to 5 times for a 30-minute fat-burning fight for your life.
Here are several ways to set-up some killer MMA-style workouts:
Option A- Max Reps for Time: Select a single exercise (preferably one that works your whole body) and perform as many quality reps as you can in 5 minutes (taking brief 5-20 second rests as needed), followed by a 1-minute rest. Then select a new movement and keep going for up to 5 total rounds. This is amazing for developing local muscular endurance.
Option B- Max Rounds for Time: Select 2 non-competitive movements (upper body/lower body, push/pull, unilateral L/R, etc.) and perform a certain number of reps for each move. Perform as many rounds of this combo as you can in 5 minutes followed by a 1-minute rest. Either repeat or select a new combo and keep going for up to 5 total rounds.
1- Spider Push-ups @ 6 reps (3/side)
2- Spider Pull-ups @ 6 reps (3/side)
This is also referred to as density training and cuts flab with the precision of a samurai sword.
Option C- Combat Cardio: Combat conditioning specialist Jason C. Brown (JCB) shows you how to train like a fighter to be a lean, mean fitness machine. This equipment-free 30-minute cardio workout will torch calories, melt fat, and improve your overall conditioning and athleticism. BOOM!
Option D- The 40-20 Five-Exercise Circuit
If I could only pick a single workout that guarantees to provide a life-changer of a workout every single time it would be this one.
Here’s how it works:
- Alternate between 40 seconds of work and 20 seconds of rest for 5 moves that work your whole body.
- Then rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle.
- Perform up to 5 total cycles for a 30-minute workout.
My favorite 40-20 workout is something I call “THE SPIDER SHREDDER”:
1- Spider Lunges Variation
2- Spider Pull-ups Variation
3- Spider Push-ups Variation
4- Spider Rotational Squat Jumps Variation
5- Spider Crawl Variation
All of these moves are inspired by Spiderman, the leanest and most athletic of superheros.
If you want to look like spidey, train like spidey!
Here’s the Spider Shredder Poster Workout (click the image below to download it):
Surely there are other options too, but these are my favorite and they will get you to fighting weight in no time.
8.) 2-Minute Extreme Endurance Intervals
Though most people will do best with work periods of 30-60 seconds at a time, sometimes you want to break out of this time frame and shock the metabolic system.
Look no further than 2-Minute (120-Second) Intervals to do just that.
It will really test your muscular endurance, lactate tolerance, and cardio conditioning.
Here are my 2 favorite ways to set this up:
Option A- 120-60: Calorie-Crushing Combos
- Select one total body or combination movement (e.g. burpees, squat to press, curl to lunge to press, clean to squat to press, etc.) and perform as many reps as you can for 2 minutes.
- Then rest a minute. That’s 1 cycle.
- Either repeat or switch to another total body or combination movement.
- Perform up to 10 total cycles for a 30-minute workout.
*On a side note, out of all 21 workout videos we shot when putting together Men’s Health DeltaFit: 82-Day Speed Shred this workout was the hardest one for me to perform. Trying to coach and entertain while gasping for breath was a deadly combo.
Option B- 120-120 Swing Intervals:
- Select a swing variation and a lighter load than normal and perform as many reps as you can in 2 minutes.
- Then rest 2 minutes. That’s 1 cycle.
- Either repeat or switch to another swings variation.
- Perform up to 10 total cycles for a 40-minute workout.
- Perform self-massage, stretching, or mobility/activation work during the rest periods.
My favorite swings variation for 2-minute intervals is the alternating 1-arm swing to 1-arm skier swing (switch sides halfway at the 60-second mark):
9.) Tabata Training: 20-10 Intervals
If you don’t know about Tabata Training, I’d be genuinely surprised.
After all, gym rats and personal trainers world-wide have been leveraging this Japanese study from 1994 by Dr. Tabata which showed that a particular 4-minute HIGH-INTENSITY interval protocol (20 second on, 10 seconds off for 8 total rounds) led to greater fat loss and fitness improvements than 60-minutes of long, slow, boring cardio at a moderate intensity.
Dr. Tabata used a bike with his patients but I prefer to use more functional strength, cardio and core moves to get the effect.
Furthermore, it’s better to perform alternating sets of non-competive movements with this bad boy otherwise intensity and form starts to hit the shitter about 3-4 rounds into it.
Finally, the 4-minutes is plenty of time for a finisher or mini-workout, but it’s not nearly enough total exercise volume to burn an adequate amount of calories on a regular basis for serious fat loss. That’s why I personally like to follow each 4-minute sequence with a 1-minute transition period before repeating again or switching to a new slew of moves.
In other words, it’s more 20-10 intervals than Tabata Training for the fitness snobs amongst us.
Here’s my favorite way to set-up this fat-slayer:
- In this 40-minute equipment-free workout you can do anytime, anywhere, you will alternate between 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest for a cardio exercise and 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest for core exercise for 4 straight minutes followed by a 1-minute transition period.
- Each station lasts 5 minutes long and there are 8 total stations for an incredible fat-blasting, metabolism-boosting fitness experience:
Station#1: Stationary Running/Mountain Climbers
Station#2: Jumping Jacks/Push-up Jacks
Station#3: Skater Jumps/T-Push-ups
Station#4: Ground Zero Jumps/Plank to Push-ups
Station#5: Running Lunges/Plyo Side Planks
Station#6: Hops/Push-up Walkout
Station#7: Iso-Explosive Squat Jumps/Cross-Body Mountain Climbers
Station#8: Shadow Boxing/Clockwork Side Plank
Final words of advice for 20-10 intervals: please avoid using high-skill movements like olympic lifts for these, particularly ones using barbells. It’s impossible for form not to alter a bit and the risk of injury greatly outweighs the potential reward, especially considering that classic calisthenics are a lot safer and convenient while still being just as effective. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
10.) Core Training Intervals
When someone says their goal is to lose weight or burn fat, what they really mean is that they want flat abs and a tighter tummy. Yes, the key to burning belly fat is a total body training approach (not spot reduction via hundreds of useless crunches or sit-ups) but you still need to do some targeted core work for best results.
Remember those big 3 strength movements I talked about earlier? Well, you can’t get really good at push-ups, pull-ups, or single-leg squats without strong shoulders and hips and a stable core. Consider core training to be the performance enhancer for all of the fierce fat-burning movements prescribed in the earlier workouts. Furthermore, sound core training will bulletproof your knees, back, and shoulders to reduce injury risk and promote longevity.
Whether your goal is to look better, move better, or flat out feel better, The Core Training Classic Workout by Mike Robertson of ROBERTSON TRAINING SYSTEMS can help you get there in the safest and most effective manner I know.
I sincerely hope you enjoy the workout (no equipment is required), and good luck!
Train your abs with a circuit of the top 6 core moves to stabilize your spine and shred up your stomach. Alternate between 60 seconds of work and 20 seconds of rest for 6 rounds followed by a 1-minute transition period. Perform 3 total cycles.
And here’s the official poster workout!!
In closing, ALL of these routines are the real deal.
They are timeless fat loss training templates that will make you a lean, mean fitness machine.
If you want serious results, you really can’t go wrong with doing several of these workouts each week so get started TODAY and MAKE A CHANGE!
BJ Gaddour, CSCS, is a metabolic training expert and the creator of the best-selling 8-DVD Men’s Health DeltaFit: 82-Day Speed Shred.
BJ transformed himself from a former fat kid with bum knees to one of THE 100 FITTEST MEN OF ALL-TIME according to Men’s Health Magazine (listed as #76). He knows what it’s like to be on both sides of the fitness spectrum and he will show you how to make a change.
BJ’s labor of love is serving as the founder and CEO of StreamFIT.com. StreamFIT features streaming fitness videos available anytime, anywhere on any device with internet access. He is also the creator of HEARTRATE HOTEL, the all-new 12-DVD travel fitness system for busy professionals looking to burn fat within the privacy of their hotel room.
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