Walk Off Fat: The Hill-Climbing Workout


Best for: Toned legs, healthy heart

Why its a fat blaster: Adding hills to your workout ups your calorie burn like crazy and gives you a fast cardio boost. Plus, its a great way to sculpt your legs and butt.

Total time: 25 minutes | Calories burned: 170

How to do it: Find a hill about the length of a football field (it should take you less than a minute to reach the top), says trainer Sherri McMillan, owner of Northwest Personal Training in Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington, who designs walking workouts. Start at a warm-up pace for 5 minutes on relatively flat ground, then attack the hill. As you climb, you should start breathing heavily, with your intensity approaching 8 or 8.5 out of a possible 10. Push yourself until you make it to the top, then turn around and walk back down at a comfortable pace to let your breathing and heart rate recover. Once at the bottom, head back up again. Repeat a total of 8 times, then cool down for 5 minutes at an easy pace.

Treadmill walkers can alternate 1–2 minutes at 4–8 percent incline with 1–2 minutes at 1 percent incline. Repeat 5–10 times. (No leaning allowed; use handrails only for balance.)

Your legs are getting an amazing workout, so head off soreness by stretching calves, quads, hamstrings, and glutes when youre done.

Do-it-better trick: Shorten your stride, take quicker steps, lean slightly forward from your hips, and pump your arms to help you power up the hill.