There’s nothing like a workout strategy that will help you add lean muscle AND burn fat at the same time (and for hours afterwards). I’ve got just the thing for you.
You want to build a body you feel good about, and I want that for you—but not at the expense of spending every waking minute on the gym floor. So, the most efficient workout, one where you get the best of both worlds (lean muscle building plus fat burning), is comprised of compound lifts and metabolic finishers.
We all know by now that the more muscle you have, the more fat you’ll burn. But, did you know that you can accelerate your fat loss and turn your body into an efficient fat-burning machine to reveal the hard-earned muscle you have—even faster? Let’s dive in.
Hit Your Hourglass Frame Goals
Compound lifts use multiple joints to work multiple muscle groups versus just one (an isolation movement uses only one joint at a time). Examples of compound movements I’ve included in this workout are squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts and rows. Not only are compound exercises great when you’re crunched for time (work several muscles at once vs. each individually), they also help to increase growth hormone production, which is essential to build that hourglass frame you’re striving so hard for (read: curvaceous, tight thighs and bottom, lean rounded shoulders, and a tapered waist).
CrossFit coined the term “metcon” for metabolic conditioning (I’m using metcon and metabolic finisher interchangeably here). There’s nothing like a metcon for incinerating fat during training—and for hours afterwards at rest. The afterburn effect, more technically called EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption), is, as per NASM,
“…the result of an elevation in oxygen consumption and metabolism (Resting Energy Expenditure), which occurs after exercise as the body recovers, repairs, and returns to its pre-exercise state. This can happen for up to 24 hours.”
Scientific evidence shows HIIT activates the afterburn effect more than steady-state cardio. Plus, metabolic finishers are also much more efficient—there’s no comparison to steady-state cardio time-wise. Why slug through uphill treadmill walking for an hour when you could slam out a 10 minute metcon with better fat-burning results? I want to get you to your goal, faster. So, let’s get moving!
Equipment You’ll Need: A kettlebell or a dumbbell
Metcon Sculpt: Full-Body Edition
Superset #1 – 4 sets, 30 seconds rest between sets
A) Single Leg Glute Bridge with Dumbbell x 12 reps
Lying on your back on a mat with the dumbbell resting below your belly button but above your hips, rest one foot flat on the ground. Push through that heal until your body is in a flat reverse plank position. Squeeze your bent leg glute at the top of the movement to ensure your hips are fully open at the top of the movement.
B) Goblet Squat Press x 12 reps
With feet shoulder-width apart and holding a kettlebell upside down with palms facing each other, sit back into a squat then explosively stand back up, contracting the glutes at the top of the movement. Keep weight dispersed evenly through the foot, but with the majority of the weight in the heels.
Superset #2 – 4 sets, 30 seconds rest between sets
A) Goblet Reverse Lunge x 12 reps
With feet shoulder-width apart and holding a kettlebell upside down with palms facing each other, lunge one foot back (don’t let your back knee hit the ground). Drive through the front heel and ball of the back foot to come back to standing.
B) Bent Over Dumbbell Row x 12 reps
Standing with dumbbells in each hand and arms by your sides, begin with knees soft (unlocked) and your core braced with your back at a 45-degree angle. Explosively but in control, row the dumbbells up, brushing your upper arms against your ribcage. Slowly lower back down to start position.
Superset #3 – 4 sets, 60 seconds rest between sets
A) Kettlebell Deadlift x 12 reps
With two hands on the horns of the kettlebell, start standing with feet shoulder-width apart. Slowly hinge back at the hips with soft knees (unlocked) until you feel a slight stretch in the hamstrings. Explosively but in control, stand back up, contracting your glutes at the top of the movement to ensure your hips are fully open.
B) Dumbbell Overhead Tricep Press x 12 reps
Standing with soft knees, core braced, and arms extended overhead with hands holding a dumbbell, slowly bend at the elbows until the dumbbell is behind your head. Explosively but in control, contract your triceps to extend your arms back overhead.
Booty Blast Finisher – 5 rounds, 60 seconds rest between rounds
Donkey Kickbacks x 10 reps (with resistance band)
With a band wrapped just above your knees, and on your hands and knees in a tabletop position, drive one leg up towards the ceiling, with knee bent and leading with that heel. Return to start position. Rep out 10, then repeat with the other leg.
Clamshells x 10 reps (with resistance band)
Lying on one side with the band wrapped just above your knees, explosively contract your glutes to pull the knees apart then slowly bring them back together.
Leg Lifts x 10 reps
In tabletop position, drive one leg straight up (keep that leg locked straight), leading with the heel. Return back to start position.
Fire Hydrants x 10 reps
In a tabletop position, with leg bent at the knee, contract your glutes to drive that leg up towards the ceiling. Pause at the top of the movement for a second or two, then slowly lower back down.
Glute Bridge x 10 reps (with resistance band)
Lying flat on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor, wrap a band around your legs, just above the knees. Explosively contract your glutes to drive them up towards the ceiling until they’re fully open. Slowly lower back down.
Sara’s website: www.sarafrenzafitness.com
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Photo Credit: James Patrick @jpatrickphoto
Hair and makeup: Denise Black @_beautybydenise__
If you enjoyed this article check out How to fall in love With exercise again.