5 Ways to Burn 500 Calories

The best way to not just slim down, but keep that weight off, is to stick to a steady and achievable weight loss goal. Experts say aiming your efforts to lose within the one to two pound range per week is ideal.

So, what exactly will that take? The solution to lose one pound is as straightforward as cutting and/or subtracting 3,500 calories per week. With simple math, we can break that down into a burn of 500 calories per day, and we’ve got you covered with some activities to do just that below. Choose your favorite, and see your way to a slimmer, long-term you.


1. Zumba: One hour, moderate intensity; 536 calories

Love to dance? For many, Zumba helps burn calories without ever feeling like a chore. The fitness activity combines choreographed dance and aerobics to get your heart rate going and your dancing feet moving. You might even learn a new move or two that you can use on your next night out on the town. Find a class near you, here. To ensure you’re reaching a moderate intensity and burning those 500 cals/hour, you should be able to talk, but not sing throughout your workout. For even more of a burn, power it up further to high intensity, which will mean you’ll feel slightly out of breath and unable to engage in conversation during the routine.


2. Rock Climbing: One hour, minimal rest sessions in between routes; 500 calories

Here’s another activity that’ll often feel more like fun than exercise. Rock climbing targets your entire upper body, including the arms, back, chest, shoulders, fingers/hands and core. Keep in mind, the more you go climbing, the better you’ll get at it, and also the more of a calorie burn the workout will become.


3. Jogging: One hour, 5mph, 12-min. mile; 544 calories

Cardio is one of the quickest ways to burn calories. However, setting out too fast can make the experience feel rather unappealing. Instead, set a steady pace you can stick with for an hour and pair it with tunes you enjoy. Those tunes just might help you go the extra mile, and with apps like PaceDJ that sync your running pace to your music tempo, could help you run stronger, too. You may also consider alternating between sprint bursts and periods of slow jogging/walking, which can make your runs even more efficient for burning fat and allow for stretches of reprieve, too.


4. Downhill skiing: 90 minutes, moderate intensity; 643 calories

As winter approaches, what better time to fit in a skiing session to help you achieve your weight loss goals. Hit the slopes, and you’ll give both your legs and your abs a good workout. Your core is your key muscle area that keeps you balanced. The cardio will also strengthen your heart and your lungs, likely without you even thinking about it. Now that’s our kind of workout! (Note, an hour of shoveling snow will provide similar benefits, if you’re ever having trouble getting out of the driveway this winter!)


5. Swimming: 70 minutes, freestyle, slow to moderate intensity; 500 calories

An easy swim can burn some serious calories. Power it up, and you’ll melt away that fat even faster. Since water is nearly 800 times denser than air, it naturally provides a mini resistance workout for your entire body. You’ll swim away calories quickly through the cardio it creates, and also build lean muscle from the resistance. This ignites your metabolism so that you continue to burn more calories even after you’ve left the pool. Bottoms up to that!

*Amounts are calculated off of a 150-pound individual.

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