What are the Best Exercises for Weight Loss?

Finding the most effective exercise can be crucial in the pursuit of weight loss. Here are some of the best exercises for weight loss, each with unique benefits.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training.

It’s a type of exercise where you do really hard workouts for a short time, then have a short rest or do easy workouts.

You keep switching between these hard and easy parts.

This type of exercise can help you get fit quickly and it’s good for burning fat.

These workouts can be done with almost any type of exercise—running, cycling, swimming, or weight training.

They’ve become notably popular due to their ability to burn a significant amount of calories in a short time.

Moreover, they elevate your metabolic rate, meaning you’ll continue burning calories after the workout.

Strength Training

Strength training, such as weightlifting, is a powerful tool for weight loss.

It helps build lean muscle mass, which can increase your metabolism and burn more extra calories, even when you’re at rest.

In particular, compound exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses that work multiple muscle groups are especially effective.

Woman exercising with weights

Running or Jogging

Running and jogging are classic fat-burning exercises.

They engage multiple muscles in your body and elevate your heart rate, leading to a significant calorie burn.

Furthermore, they can be done virtually anywhere and scaled according to your fitness level, from a leisurely jog in the park to an intense run on hilly terrain.


Swimming is a total-body workout that’s easy on your joints, making it a perfect option for people with arthritis or those who are overweight.

Various strokes work different muscles, providing both strength training and cardio benefits, all while burning a substantial number of calories.


Cycling provides numerous benefits, including increased calorie burn, improved cardiovascular health, and enhanced leg strength.

Whether it’s outdoor cycling for an adventurous workout or indoor stationary cycling for a more controlled environment, cycling is a fantastic, low-impact option for weight loss.


Walking is a great, low-impact exercise that’s particularly beneficial for beginners or those with joint issues.

It might not burn as many calories as other exercises, but it’s still an effective way to get moving and start your weight loss journey.

Incorporating walking into your daily routine—be it during breaks at work or a post-dinner stroll—can contribute to overall calorie burn.


Boxing is an intense, high-energy exercise that combines strength training and cardio.

It works all the major muscle groups, enhances coordination, and improves cardiovascular health.

Moreover, it’s an excellent stress reliever.


Pilates exercises focus on improving flexibility, balance, and core strength.

They might not burn calories as intensely as some other exercises, but they play a crucial role in toning muscles and improving posture.

Plus, a stronger core can improve your performance in other exercises, leading to greater calorie burn.

 What are the Best Exercises for Weight Loss

Jumping Rope

Jumping rope is an underrated workout that offers numerous benefits. It’s a full-body workout that can burn over 200 calories in 15 minutes.

It enhances footwork, strengthens your shoulders, improves cardiovascular health, and is a useful tool for weight loss.


Whether it’s Zumba, hip-hop, salsa, or belly dancing, dancing is a fun and effective way to burn calories.

It offers a full-body workout that improves muscle tone, strength, endurance, and flexibility.

It’s not just about the calorie burn; it’s also about enjoying your workout, which is key to sticking with it.

Here’s a table that summarizes the best exercises for weight loss:

ExerciseCalories Burned (Per 30 min)Key Benefits
HIIT260-450Burns high calories, boosts metabolism
Strength Training90-133Builds muscle, increases resting metabolic rate
Running280-520Full-body workout, high-calorie burn, stress relief
Swimming200-400Full-body workout, low impact
Cycling240-400Low impact, cardiovascular and leg strength
Walking100-150High-calorie burn, accessible
Boxing200-400Improves flexibility, balance, and core strength
Pilates108-168Improves flexibility, balance, core strength
Jumping Rope300-450Low-impact, accessible
DancingFull-body workout improves coordinationFull-body workout, enjoyable

Please note: Calorie burn is estimated for a person weighing 155 pounds. Actual calories burned will depend on body weight, the intensity of the workout, and individual metabolism.

Each exercise offers unique benefits.

You should choose the ones that suit your fitness level, personal preferences, and specific weight loss goals.

It’s also beneficial to combine different types of exercise (for example, strength training with cardio) for overall fitness and health.

Remember, successful weight loss comes from a combination of consistent exercise and a healthy diet.

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