Everyone agrees that aerobic exercise is great for your overall health. Many people even link a high metabolism to weight loss or maintaining a small physique. However, you can give your metabolism a healthy lift just by incorporating a wide variety of aerobic exercises and strength training. Keep in mind that everyone’s body is different and some aerobic exercises may increase your metabolism and heart rate differently than others.
High Intensity Cardio Exercises
Cardio workouts should be done five to six times per week for at least 30 minutes, but what if you don’t have 30 minutes to spend on cardio? Should you just skip it entirely? High intensity cardio requires less time and is more effective than a low intensity cardio, according to Muscle&Strength.com. High intensity cardio workouts elicit a higher work response and therefore burn more calories overall during the workout and during the day. This being said, high intensity cardio boosts your metabolism and does so in a shorter period of time compared to low intensity cardio. Incorporate high intensity cardio workouts such as cardio kickboxing and even swimming to get your heart rate up and metabolism boosted.
According to an article in Forbes, weight lifting can increase your metabolism while getting your heart pumping. After the age of 35 most people start to lose 0.5 percent of their muscle mass every year. This loss increases even more after the age of 60. By incorporating weight or resistance training into your weekly workouts your body’s metabolic rate increases because you have more muscle mass to maintain. Add two or three sessions per week of weight training and focus on both large and smaller muscle groups. For every muscle group you work out, include at least two exercises and 10 to 15 reps per exercise.
Circuit training is low weight workouts and high repetitions that give you little to no rest in between exercises. The purpose of circuit training is to improve both your cardiovascular fitness and improve muscle definition and tone. A circuit often includes six to 15 exercises/stations that work major muscle groups and the exercises work your heart harder to boost your metabolism. In order to burn fat, build muscle and rev up your metabolism, include circuit training two to three times per week, with each session lasting 30 to 40 minutes.
Running is a high intensity workout and according to Runner’s World, this type of aerobic training is a better metabolism booster than strength training. For a person who weighs 150 pounds and runs at a modest pace for 40 minutes, they’ll burn around 522 calories. With weight training you’ll burn 136 pounds in that same time frame. To increase your calorie burn and boost your metabolism more during a run, add in hill running training. You’ll use different sets of muscles and expend more energy in order to run at a higher incline. You’ll also develop more muscle, which is an added bonus for your metabolism.
Danielle Clark has been a writer since 2009, specializing in environmental and health and fitness topics. She has contributed to magazines and several online publications. Clark holds a Bachelor of Science in ecology and environmental science.