The Hierarchy of Fat Loss by Alwyn Cosgrove from T-Nation outlines the steps you need to follow to maximize your time when trying to get ride of fat. Visit the link for the complete article. It lists the exercise intensities that you should be working out at along with the amount of time you should be spending on each.
1. Metabolic Resistance Training – The first 3 hours of training in a week. Basically we’re using resistance training as the cornerstone of our fat loss programming. Our goal is to work every muscle group hard, frequently, and with an intensity that creates a massive “metabolic disturbance” or “after burn” that leaves the metabolism elevated for several hours post-workout. (Increase EPOC).
2. High Intensity Anaerobic Interval Training – Hours 4 and 5 in training week. The second key “ingredient” in fat loss programming is high intensity interval training (HIIT). I think readers of T-Nation will be well aware of the benefits of interval work. It burns more calories than steady state and elevates metabolism significantly more than other forms of cardio. The downside is that it flat-out sucks to do it!
3. High Intensity Aerobic Interval Training – Hours 5 and 6 in training week. The next tool we’ll pull out is essentially a lower intensity interval method where we use aerobic intervals.
4. Steady State High Intensity Aerobic Training – Hours 6 to 8 in training week. Tool number four is just hard cardio work. This time we’re burning calories — we aren’t working hard enough to increase EPOC significantly or to do anything beyond the session itself. But calories do count. Burning another 300 or so calories per day will add up.
5. Steady State Low Intensity Aerobic Training – Anything above 8 hours
This is just activity, going for a walk in the park, etc. It won’t burn a lot of calories; it won’t increase muscle or EPOC. There isn’t very much research showing that low intensity aerobic training actually results in very much additional fat loss, but you’re going to have to really work to convince me that moving more is going to hurt you when you’re in fat attack mode.