To lose weight, you need fun workout routines and the best exercises for love handles! Well, not all fitness experts agree that certain exercises can target love handles, but they all know that fun workout routines can help you lose inches everywhere. If you’re having fun, you’ll keep exercising.
“Pilates is anaerobic exercise, so you don’t burn as many calories as you would running,” says Pilates instructor Alana Reed, from NYC. “But you do build muscle – and the more muscle your body has, the more efficiently it burns calories.”
But, not everyone agrees that Pilates is a “fun workout routine”! I love it – but I know people who think the Zumba Fitness Total Body Transformation System is much more fun. I’m less into dancing than stretching and using my body to build strength, so I stick with Pilates and yoga.
Here are five workouts that you can do at home, that can help you lose those love handles…
1. Fusion fitness
Fusion classes mix two or more types of exercise in one workout. Think Pilates and yoga (Yogilates), cycling and stretch, or boxing and running.
Your body adapts to regular patterns of movement – and fusion keeps you on your toes! Some workouts don’t mix well because they’re too different. Yoga, for example, has a meditative quality that doesn’t fuse well with kickboxing. I’ve found the perfect solution for this! The 10 Minute Solution: 5 Day Get Fit Mix offers boot camp, kick boxing, strength training, and cardio — and ends with a calm, muscle-building yoga workout.
“Mixing up your exercise routine is a great way to lose weight and increase your fitness level,” says LA-based certified trainer Angela Parker. “Change surprises your body, makes it work harder, and burns more calories.”
2. Zumba and other dance workouts
“Ditch the workout and join the party!” is the slogan of Zumba’s sexy fitness program — it’s definitely a fun workout routine. Columbia native “Beto” Perez started this sizzling trend in 1999; it combines Latin rhythms with intervals and resistance training. Dance-based workouts in general are trendy, and range from ballet boot camp to cardio salsa.
“In Zumba, you’ll burn calories, feel energized, and do moves that – trust me – your body has not done before,” says Kim Pace, a performance enhancement specialist in Boca Raton, Florida. But, Zumba isn’t all good:
“Zumba doesn’t improve strength, and it’s hard for uncoordinated people to keep up with the choreography,” says exercise physiologist Becky Williamson, of San Jose, CA. And, Zumba does little for muscle development.
Besides Zumba, another fun workout routine is Belly Dance For Beginners. I really, really enjoy 10 Minute Solution: Dance Your Body Thin Kit — it’s some ballet, some jazz, and lots of hip movements! These DVD workouts don’t offer exercises specifically for love handles; they help you trim inches all over your body.
Sign up for my free weekly "She Blossoms" newsletter
3. Individual and group personal training
Exercising one-on-one with a personal trainer can be a fun workout routine, depending on your trainer’s personality! Group training may be even more fun, especially if you like your “peeps.” “Accountability, personalization, and great workouts make personal training effective,” says certified fitness instructor Lindsay Bogdasarian, of Ann Arbor, MI.
Group personal training is a cheaper exercise for love handles than private training and can offer better results. When people exercise in a group they work ten times harder than alone.
4. Active gaming – Wii or other video games
“Exergaming” is video game technology that gets participants leaping, swinging, and sweating – and they’re sprinting beyond Wii or Dance Dance Revolution. Video game-enabled bikes, boards, pads and other equipment are popping up in schools, health clubs, and even doctors’ offices.
“Active Gaming makes exercise fun,” says Lisa Hansen, M.S., co-director of XRKade Research Labs at the University of South Florida. “Participants enjoy themselves, which motivates them to go to the gym more and work out longer.”
However, though active gaming is a fun workout routine, it’s not the best exercise for love handles. Research from the University of Michigan shows that actual sports burn three to four times more calories than virtual exercise – so exergaming shouldn’t replace “real” activities.
To lose those love handles, try the exercises in the Wii Fit Plus with Balance Board.
5. Kranking for upper arm strength
This upper-body cycling exercise is new to many fitness centers, and may not target those love handles. But, it can be an excellent way to lose weight. “One of the best core and cardio training exercises is upper-body rotation while standing,” says San Francisco-based certified personal trainer Jim Karanas. “Kranking is a great alternative for people who may struggle with traditional workouts, such as the lower-limb challenged, pregnant women, obese people, or the elderly.”
What do you think of these fun workout routines and exercises for love handles? Comments welcome below…