Mix it Up

Burn more fat and keep it off by not doing the same old thing.

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A broader-ranging approach to your fitness can lead to greater fat loss that stays off. A recent study published in the Journal of Obesity found that those who maintained their fat loss tended to do greater moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) per week when they engaged in more than a single type of fitness activity.

According to study authors, “We found that for each additional different type of moderate to vigorous activity performed, participants on average spent an additional nine minutes in MVPA and expended 56 more calories per day. For example, participants who reported engaging in three different activities during the previous week spent on average an additional 18 minutes in MVPA and expended 112 more calories per day compared to participants who reported engaging in only one activity.”

Bottom line: According to guidelines, your baseline goal per week is 250 MVPA minutes to maintain weight loss. But you may be able to go beyond that if you start mixing it up. Walk, cycle, jog, take a fitness class, train with weights, swim and so on — you’ll burn more fat and keep it off much longer. Find two or three activities you love and do them each week.