Most people tend to think that any kind of physical activity leads to weight loss. As it turns out, this assumption is wrong. If your goal is to become slimmer and lose excess pounds, you need to stop doing the exercises that lead to muscle gain and make you appear visually bigger.
We at Bright Side have found out which exercises are ineffective and what they should be replaced with. Don’t miss the bonus advice at the end of the article to learn the three secrets of effective weight loss!
1. Side tilts with weights
To achieve beautiful washboard abs, many girls do side tilts with dumbbells or other types of weights. This exercise develops the obliques while visually enlarging the stomach and making the waist less noticeable.
What you should be doing instead: Switch to tilts without weights, or use dumbbells no heavier than 3-4 lbs. Do not perform this exercise more than once per week.
Squats are one of the most effective exercises for firming your buttocks and thighs. However, if you have excess weight and your muscles are covered in fat deposits, doing squats will make these parts of the body look even larger. Besides, this exercise won’t just pump up the buttocks but the leg muscles as well.
What you should be doing instead: Don’t get carried away with barbell squats. At the outset, squat without weights. Do 20-30 reps for 4-5 sets, with breaks between them no longer than 30-40 seconds.
3. Adduction and abduction of the hips in sitting position
When it comes to combating body fat, the outer and inner thighs can be the most problematic areas. In the hopes of getting slimmer, women are actively doing machine weight-assisted hip exercises at the gym. But such power training doesn’t lead to weight loss.
What you should be doing instead: For a start, stop doing the machine weight-assisted adduction/abduction exercise, and replace it with weight-free (or low-weight) lunges.
4. Weight-assisted back exercises
Back-strengthening exercises are crucial for anyone doing power training. But performing them frequently and with heavy weights can cause your back to become too wide, thus ruining your figure’s feminine proportions.
What you should be doing instead: Do back exercises no more than once a week, using a small weight. Your warm-up before each workout must include hyperextensions: this will help to strengthen the back muscles without increasing muscle mass.
This exercise is convenient because it requires no additional equipment and can be easily done at home. However, you shouldn’t overdo it — push-ups strengthen the pectoral muscles, the triceps brachii, and the triceps. If you have excess weight, exercising these muscles will make your arms and shoulders appear even larger.
What you should be doing instead: Replace push-ups with planking. This will help to strengthen major muscle groups and tighten the stomach.
Don’t forget the three basic rules that must be followed if your goal is to lose weight:
- Combine cardio and strength exercises.
- Change your workout programs, and try to do different variations of exercises for the same muscle group.
- To lose extra pounds, perform exercises using smaller weights, but do more sets and repetitions with shorter breaks between them.