How to Burn More Calories Easily

A mature woman working out on a spinning bike in a group

Workout with someone slightly better than yourself. It will motivate you and you will workout much harder than you workout alone.

Do you want to burn more calories during your workout, as much as 200% more? There is an easy way to do that. Make a workout buddy who is slightly fitter than you are.

Motivating yourself is really hard if you work out alone. If I work out home, I can’t push as hard as I do in a gym, even though I don’t work out with any other person in the gym. Just because I feel like that someone is watching my workout, and I can push harder in the gym. That is why I always recommend joining a gym where you can make a workout buddy. It is much easier to stick to your workout routines if someone is working out with you. However, the benefit of workout buddies does not finish there.

According to Kansas State University researcher, you actually workout harder if you work out with someone who is better than you are (or you think she is fitter than you). In this study, participants were shown a virtual “partner” and the researcher told them than that she was slightly better than they were. The participants worked out 40% longer when they were working out with this “virtual” partner than when they were working out alone.

One way to implement this is to hire a personal trainer who actually workout with you. However, this is outside of many people’s budget. If you are a gym member, you can participate in a small class, such as a boot camp workout, offered at many gyms with an extra cost. These classes usually have less than 10 people, get a better supervision from the fitness teacher and you can make good workout buddies.

You can also take regular classes such as kickboxing and spinning classes. You can ask others to be your workout buddies, or just find someone who is always there and who works out hard. See her as your “target” workout buddy. It will motivate you a lot.

In or outside of a gym, if you can gather 3 (or more, but total must be even including you) people as your workout buddies, here is what you can do. Make two teams and compete for workout hardness with each other. For example, add up each group’s total workout time and a team with a longer workout wins. If the group is small, you need to reshuffle the combination of workout buddies regularly (say every week) so that you can keep the friendships going. According to the same Kansas State University study, competing among teams motivates people to work out up to 200% harder.

If you cannot find anyone to work out, then get a workout DVD. Most workout DVDs show an instructor and several participants for the program. Think one of them is your workout buddy. My friend, who is a regular user of DVDs, names each participant such as “Mean Sally” or “Show off Annie” and competes with them when she works out with the DVD. It works!

Burning more calories is easier when working out with someone you perceive as better. Kansas State University November 2012

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