Whether you’re trying to get lean, maintain your weight or bulk up, you need to know how many calories you’re consuming and burning. Yet, while it’s easy to count calories in our diet, it’s hard to estimate how many we’re actually burning in the gym and in fact the best ways to burn the most calories in an hour at the gym.
Let’s be honest, finding the time to spend hours in the gym can be quite difficult. So, if you’re crunched for time, one of the ways to measure how many calories you can burn doing a particular exercise is to figure out how much energy it expends in the time you actually do it. In other words, how many calories does it burn?
Before we get into the various exercises and best ways to burn the most calories in an hour, here are some important things to consider:
- Your basal metabolic rate (BMR) is the number of calories your body requires to carry out daily functions — and accounts for 50–70% of the energy your body uses.
- The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn even at rest.
- Physical activity produces heat in your body, called “thermic effect.” It’s the second largest contributor to calorie expenditure.
6 of the best ways to burn the most calories in an hour
In March 2017, Harvard Health Publishing released data on many common activities and their calories burned within 30 minutes for people of varying weights. Here are some of the best in no particular order:
- Running on the treadmill
- Stationary biking
- Circuit training
- Vigorous weight lifting
The Mayo Clinic, drawing on research published by the National Institutes of Health, lists popular forms of exercise by their caloric impacts. It’s top six is as follows:
- Running up stairs = 819 calories/hour
- Vigorous swimming = 892 calories/hour
- Taekwondo = 937 calories/hour
- Soccer = 937 calories/hour
- Jump rope = 1,074 calories/hour
- Running, 8 mph = 1,074 calories/hour