How to Lose Weight Just by Exercising

Three Methods:Creating an Exercise PlanCultivating an Active LifestyleTrying Out a Balanced Beginner Weight-Loss Workout

Weight loss doesn’t have to be complicated: if you burn more calories than you consume, you’ll lose weight.[1] However, you don’t have to go on a strict diet or count every calorie to be successful in weight loss. If you create an active lifestyle and make exercise a habit, you’ll be able to lose weight.

Method 1
Creating an Exercise Plan

  1. Image titled Improve Performance in Life Step 1
    Write your exercise goals down.[2] The simple act of writing down your goals makes you much more likely to accomplish them.
    • Make your goals realistic. If you’ve never run a mile, don’t make your goal to run two miles a day during your first week of exercise.
    • Create a schedule. You want to have set days for your workouts. You should gradually increase the duration and difficulty of your workouts.
  2. Image titled Get Ready for Swimming Efficiently Step 8
    Create high-intensity cardio sessions.[3] Cardio workouts are an essential part of burning calories and fat. With cardio, you can burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time.
    • Choose the type of cardio you enjoy. Some types of cardio include: swimming, running, and jumping rope.
    • Do your cardio for at least twenty minutes at a time for maximum benefit.
    • Add in intervals to your workout. For example, sprint as fast as you can for one minute, then walk for two minutes, then sprint again for one minute, and walking again for two. Gradually add more repetitions to your routine.
    • When doing intervals, using machines like treadmills can be helpful because you can keep your speeds consistent.
  3. Image titled Control Weight Step 7
    Add strength training. Even though cardio is the quickest way to lose fat and burn calories, strength training is an important part of keeping the weight off and building up your muscle mass.[4] As your muscle increases, so will your metabolism.
    • You don’t need a gym to strength train. Start with bodyweight exercises.[5] These include: sit-ups, crunches, push-ups, planks, burpees, and lunges.
    • Gradually add in weights.[6] Exercises with dumbbells, like curls or tricep extensions, can especially help to target your arms and reduce arm fat.
  4. Image titled Bike for Weight Loss Step 9
    Vary your workouts.[7] If you do the same exercises every day, you’ll be more likely to burn out and get bored or reach a fitness plat and have a difficult time losing weight.
    • Alternate days between cardio and strength training.
    • Switch up your cardio. Maybe go for a long bike ride one day and a run the next time you do cardio.
    • In your strength training, spend one day a week focusing on your core, one day on your arms, and one day on your legs.
  5. Image titled Control Weight Step 6
    Join a class.[8] If you can, joining an exercise class can be extremely beneficial to your exercise routine.
    • In a class, a teacher will most likely push you harder than you’d push yourself.
    • Also, you’ll have the accountability of your classmates.
    • If you pay for classes in bulk ahead of time, you’ll be more likely to stick to going on a regular basis.

Method 2
Cultivating an Active Lifestyle

  1. Image titled Lose Weight Gardening Step 3
    Ease into exercising.[9] If you don’t already consistently exercise, diving headfirst into a strenuous regime can be discouraging and even cause injury. Get creative and find small ways to add more movement to your day.
    • Do housework and yard work. Scrubbing, dusting, raking, weeding and mowing are all great ways to burn calories. Plus, you’ll check off some of your chores.
    • Go out of your way to walk more. Park 15 minutes away from your office building or at the farthest end of a store’s parking lot.
    • Pay for your gas inside, and walk inside a restaurant instead of using a drive-thru.
    • Always take the stairs instead of an elevator or escalator.
    • Though these are small adjustments, the calories you burn add up.
  2. Image titled Lose Weight and Still Be a Couch Potato Step 7
    Add a daily walk.[10] Walking is unintimidating, and it is a great way to get in shape that is gentle on your body.
    • You can walk anywhere: around your office, in your neighborhood, or at a park. Plan your route ahead of your walk, so you know how far you are going to go.
    • Walk as long as you can, as many days of the week as you can. Thirty minutes a day is an excellent supplement to your exercise routine.
  3. Image titled Bike for Weight Loss Step 5
    Change your commute. If you are in a position to do so, consider biking to work.[11] Biking is a great way to add cardio into your routine.
    • If you bike to work, you’ll not only improve your fitness, you’ll also save money on gas and help the environment by reducing your emissions.
  4. Image titled Stop Labeling Yourself a Loser Step 2
    Start fidgeting.[12] Even tiny movements, like tapping your toes to a catchy song can help improve your overall wellbeing.
    • If you get the urge to move, don’t suppress it.
    • Move your fingers, sway back and forth, changing your seating position, play with nearby items.
    • Don’t sit while you think or wait. Stand up and pace around.
  5. Image titled Maintain a Healthy Diet (With_Without Fast Food) Step 1
    Invest in a stability ball.[13] If you work in an office setting, this is an ideal way to incorporate some strength training into your workday.
    • Simply sit on your stability ball instead of a desk chair.
    • If you don’t like the idea of a stability ball, consider a standing desk, instead.
  6. Image titled Be Happy Even Your Life Is Turned Upside Down Step 9
    Walk your dog often. This is an incentive for you to get outside walking and will benefit your pet, as well.
    • If you don’t have a dog, think about dog walking for a friend or putting out an advertisement to be a dog walker as a side job.
    • Agreeing to walk someone else’s pet will hold you accountable to your exercise plans.
  7. Image titled Balance Work and Life Step 4
    Consider a fitness tracking device.[14] A wristband device can help you keep track of how much you really are increasing your daily movement.
    • Plus, seeing it on your wrist will be a reminder to get moving.

Method 3
Trying Out a Balanced Beginner Weight-Loss Workout

  1. Image titled Stimulate Weight Loss Step 4
    Stretch out your body.[15] Stretching before working out is a good habit to get into. It will help loosen up your muscles and prevent you from getting hurt, so you can continue your workouts on schedule.
    • Sit on the ground with your legs out in front of you. Fold forward, reaching your hands toward you toes. It’s okay if you can’t touch your toes yet. Hold this pose for 30 seconds, take a break, and then hold it for 30 more seconds. This stretch with help loosen up your hamstrings.
    • Do 20 walking lunges around your room or outside on the pavement.[16] This dynamic stretch with warm up your legs.
    • Stand upright, and grab one of your feet behind you with a bend at the knee. Pull it as close to your body as your can while still keeping your balance. Then, switch sides. This will stretch out your quad muscles.
  2. Image titled Lose Weight Without a Diet Plan Step 9
    Do walk and run intervals for 25 minutes. In a beginner’s workout, you can do shorter run intervals. This can be easily done outside with a timer or on a treadmill.
    • Walk for four minutes, and then run vigorously for one minute. Repeat this sequence three more times. Then, after your last minute run, walk for five more minutes to cool down.
    • Make sure on the walk portions of your intervals, you are walking briskly.
  3. Image titled Apply the Basics of Weight Loss Step 6
    Do 50 crunches or sit ups.[17] Doing a small sequence of body weight exercises after intervals can help you burn fat more quickly.
    • Lay on your back on a comfortable foam pad or towel.
    • Place your feet flat on the floor, and bend your knees slightly.
    • If you’re doing crunches, raise your body up halfway to your knees and then back down to the ground. Go all the way to your knees if you want to do sit-ups.
    • You can either do your 50 crunches or sit-ups all at once, or split them up into two sets of 25 with a great in-between.
  4. Image titled Lose Weight Without a Diet Plan Step 5
    Complete 20 push-ups. If you find push-ups too difficult at first, you can modify them.[18] Simply put your knees on the floor as you do your push-ups but keep the rest of your body aligned in a straight line.
    • You can do these all at once or in two sets of 10 with a break in between.
  5. Image titled Lose Weight (Men Above 25) Step 4
    Plank for 30 seconds.[19] Plank is a good exercise to end on because it utilizes your entire body, so you finish your workout strong.
    • The plank position looks like the top of a push-up before you bend your arms. You want to body to be straight, like a board. You can modify the plank by resting on your forearms instead of your hands.


  • Instead of allowing yourself to become frustrated or depressed with your current weight, use it as a motivational tool. While you exercise, think: "Someone called me chubby and I didn't like it. Pretty soon, people will be telling me that I look like I’ve lost weight!"
  • Set a target weight for a specific occasion, i.e. a friend's wedding in which you're a bridesmaid.
  • To prevent yourself from getting discouraged, give yourself a small reward at the end of each day.
  • Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water each day. This helps flush metabolic waste to keep your metabolism in top shape.[20] It may help to carry a metal water bottle around with you at all times. This will help remind you to drink, is cheaper than purchasing drinks whenever you get thirsty, and is better for the environment.
  • When your done exercising, reward yourself with a small snack. But don't go too big.


  • You will have soreness and muscle aches if you haven't vigorously exercised in a while. Don't worry. The more you exercise, the more you'll stretch your muscles and the pain will greatly decrease.
  • Anyone over the age of 60 or who has heart disease, high blood pressure, or arthritis should consult a doctor before attempting interval training.
  • Watch for overall body condition changes, not just weight. Since exercising builds muscle and burns fat, and since muscle weighs more than fat, pay more attention to how you look and feel than the numbers on the scale.
  • Don't be too hard on yourself. Expect a gradual weight loss, and stay consistent.

Sources and Citations

Show more... (17)

Article Info

Categories: Motivation to Exercise