6 Best Exercises to Boost Your Weight Loss Efforts

Claire Riley, B.S.

Sep 7, 2021

Highlight the Benefits of Strength Training for Weight Loss

The following six exercises could help them “shift the needle” toward effective weight loss (while remaining within the recommended, safe limits, of course)—so to speak.

These exercises combine resistance training and cardio elements, so your client effectively harnesses cardio's calorie-burning powers, plus strength training's muscle mass maintenance benefits.


Jump Rope
There’s a reason skipping is well-loved by pro athletes everywhere—from MMA fighters to famous footballers, from bodybuilding legends to CrossFit competitors.

It's ideal for conditioning and is incredibly versatile.

Think about how intense the exercise is.

You will have to use their shoulders and arms to turn the rope at a quick pace while their legs (think: quads, hamstrings, and calves) and glutes work hard to keep up.

The exercise also calls for core involvement.

So, is it any surprise to know that skipping can help an average 140-pound woman burn up to 318 calories every 30 minutes?

That said, you might become bored with the movement’s repetitive nature. So here are three things you could do to up the “fun factor” for your client:

Add intermediate or advanced skipping movements (e.g., double-under) once you have mastered the basics of jump rope.

Perform the exercise in a HIIT format (e.g., 30 seconds of all-out skipping, followed by 20 seconds of rest).

Mix up your client performs it (e.g., get your client to perform it as a warm-up exercise instead of a finisher exercise).

Rowing
Does you struggle with a history of knee injuries? If yes, consider programming in rowing as it will help your client work at the highest intensity possible with the lowest impact on their joints.

As a full-body workout, rowing targets 85% of the body’s muscles—including the legs, arms, back, and core.

Meaning? It helps increase your client's strength and cardiovascular capacity simultaneously (i.e., involves both cardio and strength-training elements).

But how does that translate to its calorie-burning abilities? Impressively well, it appears.

Research shows that the metabolic requirements of an interval rowing workout are similar to what's experienced during MMA training. Plus: A man weighing 183 pounds (83 kg) can expect to scorch around 377 calories from a 30-minute row session.

Battle Ropes
Don’t look down on this equipment-light exercise: A 2015 study found that just ten 15-second bursts of battle ropes can lead to the same degree of heart rate increase as an all-out full-body sprint in participants!

What about calories?

Well, it appears that just 10 minutes on the battle ropes can help you torch up to 120 calories!

Wall Balls
A classic CrossFit movement, the wall ball exercise is a high-intensity compound move that requires maximum effort from various large muscles in your client's body.

Also known as a wall ball squat, the wall ball exercise is where you perform a squat—then throw a ball against the wall as they’re coming out of the bottom position. They’ll have to catch the ball on the rebound with their arms overhead, then immediately lower right back down into the squat.

Yes: It’s an intense exercise that’ll target your quads, shoulders, triceps, chest, core, glutes, and hamstrings, plus improve their explosive power and cardiovascular endurance.

Farmer’s Walk
Let’s be honest. All the exercises mentioned above (i.e., jump rope, rowing, battle ropes, and wall ball slams) call for decent coordination skills. So, what happens if you struggle in this area?

Is there an exercise that’ll help you train all-out and burn as many calories as they possibly could without worrying about their coordination?

Thankfully, yes. And it’s none other than the farmer’s walk.

This is where you hold a heavy object (it could be a barbell, pair of dumbbells, kettlebells, or whatever you can think of), then walk a specific distance without ever setting the weight on the floor. Simple as that.

While simple, the farmer's walk is a highly effective exercise.

It works nearly every muscle group in your body, particularly the legs, core (including the region’s deep stabilizing muscles, transverse abdominis), and shoulder muscles.

Prowler Sled Push
Looking for another exercise with low coordination demands but high calorie-burn capabilities?

Then a good candidate is the prowler sled push.

Like the farmer's walk, the prowler sled push is a low-skill move that requires a decent amount of effort. To get you to do the basic sled push, you'll need to drive the (suitably loaded) sled forward with your hamstrings, glutes, and calves.

That’s not all: Their core will be working overdrive, too, since it’s responsible for power transfer from the lower body—through the torso—and into the arms, then the sled.

You upper back muscles will engage too. It’s basically a full-body compound movement.

A critical cue is: "Keep arms close to your body."

You want to bend your elbows as they're pushing the sled. This will naturally lead to a more upright torso angle, around 45 degrees.

This is ideal in the beginning stages (as you get familiar with the movement). It helps build resilient spinal integrity (i.e., reminds you to maintain a neutral back) and reinforces proper pushing posture.