Chest exercises, including pushups, bench presses and chest dips, will strengthen your pectorals, but these exercises alone will not eliminate chest fat. Because you cannot spot train any area of your body, the only way to eliminate chest fat is by losing weight. Cardiovascular exercise burns hundreds of calories per hour, and some cardio activities incorporate upper-body movements that activate and tone chest muscles. Since muscles are more metabolically active than fat, perform cardiovascular activities that include strength-training movements to burn more calories and eliminate chest fat quicker.
Elliptical trainers burn the same amount of calories as many high-impact aerobic exercises without placing stress on your joints. According to Harvard Health Publications, a 185-pound person burns 400 calories in 30 minutes with elliptical training. This exercise will not only increase your heart and lung capacity while toning your lower body, it also has handles that you can pull and push to engage the muscles in your arms and chest. Perform 30 to 60 minutes of elliptical training at least five times weekly to reduce fat from your chest while toning the muscles throughout your body.
Dual-Action Exercise Bike
Like elliptical trainers, dual action bicycles work the upper and lower body while providing many cardiovascular benefits. Unlike recumbent bikes, dual-action cycles have movable handlebars that engage the upper body. A 185-pound person burns more than 450 calories every 30 minutes with vigorous cycling, according to Harvard Health Publications, and moving your arms while cycling allows you to burn even more calories. Dual-action bikes are available at some gyms and can be purchased for home use. When available, use a dual-action bike instead of a traditional stationary cycle to tone your arm and chest muscles while burning fat.
Rowers are low-impact cardiovascular machines that burn calories while toning and stretching muscles in your upper and lower body. Rowers mimic the upper-body movements necessary to row a boat, engaging the muscles in your chest, arms and shoulders. Rowing machines can also burn more than 250 calories in just 30 minutes, according to Harvard Health Publications. Most rowers have multiple resistance levels, allowing you to increase the intensity of your workout while maximizing your calorie-burning potential. Use rowing machines when you want to burn body fat, build chest muscles and increase your flexibility simultaneously.
Circuit training alternates strength-building and aerobic activities. According to “Fitness” magazine, circuit training can burn 30 percent more calories than cardiovascular exercise alone, and it minimizes the boredom associated with performing one exercise for an extended time period. You can incorporate any strength-building exercise into your circuit training routine, including squats, situps and crunches, or you can stick to strength-training exercises that develop the chest muscles, such as pushups. Do 10 to 12 minutes of an aerobic activity, such as jumping rope, running in place or sprinting, followed by two to three minutes of a strength-building activity to accelerate the pace that your body burns chest fat and tones your chest muscles.
- ExRx.net: Fat Loss & Weight Training Myths
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Physical Activity for Everyone
- Harvard Health Publications: Calories Burned in 30 Minutes for People of Three Different Weights
- WebMD: Chest Exercise to Help Tone and More
- Overstock.com: Top 5 Benefits of Using a Rowing Machine
- "Fitness": Circuit Training Workout: Burn 30 Percent More Calories
Before starting her writing career, Tanya Brown worked as an eighth-grade language arts teacher. She also has a background in nursing, with extensive experience in urology, neurology and neurosurgery clinics. Brown holds a bachelor's degree in psychology and is pursuing her master’s degree in educational psychology.