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Best way to burn 500+ calories

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I want to burn at least 500 calories at the gym a night...any ideas on how to go about that? 

I never know how to figure in weight lifting or things like crunches, push ups and lunges.  How do you figure that in?

Thanks!  And Happy Friday!
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typically i can burn 5-600 calories in about 50 minutes on an arc trainer or an elliptical if i up the resistance and really go all out and move at a steady, but quick pace.  I do slow down a bit if i add resistance, but i end up burning more calories that way, so I have no problem sacrificing a little speed.  Another good alternative is taking a spinning class.  You can burn around 800 calories in a 60 min class, plus its 10 times as fun as just being out on cardio equipment by yourself. 

Factoring in other exercise like weight training and other traditional 'calisthenics' is pretty easy.  Being that I am not super fit, i do push ups, chin ups, etc.  much more slowly than other people so when i log that activity, I cut the time in half. 

I hope that helps! 

P.S. If you are athletic enough to work out every night, kudos!  If not, try going to the gym every other night to prevent injury.  Nothing curbs motivation like a bad sprain! 


Cardio is a good way but you can also do circuit training.  You find a couple different exercises or machines to do and you use light weights with high reps.  You try and take as short of a break inbetween each so your heart rate stays up and the blood keeps flowing.  Take a small break once the whole circuit is done and then do it again.  This will not only burn a lot of calories but you also tone up your body so you see results in the mirror faster while the fat is lost.

Just a thought and a good way to burn a lot of calories!
To answer your question I would have to say the best way to burn 500 cal at the gym (w/out spending hours there) would be by taking a class.. especially spinning or boxing/kickboxing. However, I am currently wrestling with the idea of dropping a few of my classes a week and substituting more full body weight days. You wont burn as many calories during the act of weight lifting, (you'll burn 8-10 calories per minute lifting weights.. so based on 8 cals x 45 minutes- you will burn approx. 360 cals in a session) but one big benefit to lifting is it gives you a metabolic spike for an hour after your workout which means you will burn an extra 25% of the calories you burned during your 45 minute session. So in the example I just gave you of 360 cals/45 minute session, it ends up being 450 calories. Make sense? Additionally the more muscle mass you have the more calories you burn while resting b/c muscle takes more energy to sustain. Fore every 3lbs of muscle you have, you'll burn an extra 120 cal per day just chillin'.  

The best way to burn that many calories at one time is through a cardio workout.  For example, you would need to run approximately 5 miles (depending on your current weight) at a 10min/mile pace to burn 500 calories.  Anaerobic exercise or weight lifting, squats, lunges, etc..  don't burn as many calories as you think; but it is necessary to maintain muscle mass and prevent injury as you increase the intensity of your cardio workouts.  Focus on some kind of cardio for calorie burning every night if you want.  On alternate nights, top off the cardio with either an upper body workout (tri-cep dips, push-ups, shoulder presses, bicep curls, etc.) for no more than 20 minutes OR lower body work (lunges, squats, etc.) for no more than 20 minutes.

CAUTION:  Vary your cardio routine so you don't burn out, protract an inury, and/or become chronically exhausted.  Attempting to burn 500 calories every night is pretty intense unless you're a conditioned athlete or have all night. 


It's pretty easy to burn 500 calories by bicycling at an easy-to-moderate pace. 14mph for an hour will easily get you there.

I don't know about at the gym(I've never been the gym type) but I do know that hiking burns 400 cals an hour. So if you are lucky enough to live somewhere that has a forest or national park near by, you could easily grab a partner(or solo) and spend an hour and a half hiking to satisfy your goal. It works out more muscle groups than simply using a machine and it also provides beautiful scenery during the work out.


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spin is very good as mentioned, or Mountin biking is very good, I did 2700kals in 2.5 hours at the weekend !

Your calorie expenditure depends on your current weight - the more you weigh the more you generally burn per hour (or any other time unit).

My current weight is 125lbs and for me to burn 500 calories it would take 37-38 min on a treadmill running at 8 min/mile or a little faster (4.7 - 5 miles or so).

The best way to determine calorie burn is via a device/program like BodyBugg or the BodyMedia Fit. That said, the number of calories you burn depends on your metabolism, your body weight, and the effort you exert. Most aerobic machines are inaccurate at calculating calorie burn, because they assume a constant rate. Give yourself a 5-10 minute warm up, then restart the machine, and your results should be pretty accurate.

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