Almost everyone wants to increase the number of calories they burn during exercise, because more calorie burning means more fat loss and better muscle tone. Targeted training of the chest and back burns fewer calories than cardiovascular exercise such as running or cycling. However, you still burn calories during a targeted workout, but the number is affected by several factors, including exercise intensity and your weight.
Calories Burned Factors
The most significant factor determining the number of calories you burn is the intensity of your exercise. Exercise that gets your heart pumping and makes it difficult to talk burns more calories than low-intensity exercise. The duration of your workout also plays a significant role. With all other factors being equal, the longer you exercise, the more calories you burn. Your weight is also a factor. Generally speaking, people who weigh more burn more calories during exercise. A combination of genetic and lifestyle factors -- including your metabolism, diet, muscle mass, age and general health -- can also affect the number or calories you burn.
Example Chest Exercises
Chest exercises include everything from stretching to intense weightlifting. One of the most popular chest exercises is the bench press, which also exercises the shoulders and arms. With heavy weights and a vigorous intensity, a 150-pound person will burn about 200 calories in 30 minutes. A 100-pound person can expect to burn about 130 calories in 30 minutes.
Example Back Exercises
Any exercise that forces your back to support weight exercises this area. Because the back helps to stabilize the rest of the body, almost every exercise works the back to some degree. Rowing exercises and exercises that are performed with your body bent forward while lifting weights target the back. These sorts of weightlifting activities burn about 90 calories in 30 minutes on a 125-pound person. If you increase the intensity and speed, you can expect to burn about 180 calories if you are 125 pounds and 220 calories if you are 150 pounds in 30 minutes.
Circuit training can help you increase the intensity of your exercise and can even increase your metabolism for several hours after exercise. Circuit training uses four or five circuits of exercise targeting different areas of the body followed by a few minutes of cardio. You then do four or five more circuits of different exercises. You can greatly increase the speed at which you build muscles as well as the rate at which you lose weight with such a routine.
Van Thompson is an attorney and writer. A former martial arts instructor, he holds bachelor's degrees in music and computer science from Westchester University, and a juris doctor from Georgia State University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards, including a 2009 CALI Legal Writing Award.