It’s only natural that some people think the keto diet will help them lose that “spare tire” around their hips without any diligent exercise.

As great as it sounds to get the body of your dreams by lounging around and watching Netflix all day, it’s not likely to happen (assuming your dream body is on the leaner, healthier side of the spectrum). Training for weight loss on keto is a necessary “evil.” 

The good news is that just because you want to lose weight (and keep it off), doesn’t mean you have to turn into a gym-junkie or spend hours slaving away on the treadmill every week. Quite the contrary, actually.

If you train the right way, you can lose a significant amount of weight on a sustainable exercise regimen that won’t leave you loathing every minute of it.

After all, we know you have a busy life outside of your diet and exercise regimen. Thus, this article will walk you through ways to incorporate effective and time-efficient training for weight loss on keto.

What we’ll talk about in this article:

Effectively Training for Weight Loss on Keto

Short PSA: Regardless how much you love staying active and hitting the gym, it’s not practical for the vast majority of people to spend 2-3 hours exercising every day.

If you’re a professional athlete or a pro bodybuilder, that’s one thing; but for many people, work, school, family, hobbies, and many other life obligations take up most of their time, and unfortunately, exercising isn’t always going to be the priority.

As such, it begs the question, “What is the most effective and time-efficient way of training for weight loss on keto?”

In short, you need to maximize your time in the gym or wherever you choose to exercise by implementing concurrent training. This will allow you to spend the least amount of time working out while achieving sustainable weight loss.

What is concurrent training, you ask? This next section will break it down for you.

Using Concurrent Training for Weight Loss on Keto

It’s not unusual to see gym-goers loaf around and chit chat for an hour while they “exercise,” which is time that would best be invested doing something worthwhile.

After all, you should be actually working out while you’re in the gym. Seems rather nonsensical to be standing around and relaxing when you’re in the gym.

Moreover, the fitness niche seems to be dichotomized between a spectrum of people who advocate only lifting weights and those who feel that cardio is all that’s necessary.

In reality, regardless if you’re trying to build muscle or lose weight on the keto diet, you will benefit from both weight training (anaerobic exercise) and cardio (aerobic exercise).

And yes, this applies to females as well! (Don’t worry, I promise you won’t magically get “bulky” just because you lift weights, that’s simply not how the body works.)

This is where the protocol of concurrent training comes into play.

In a nutshell, concurrent training is when one integrates both cardio and resistance training into the same workout.

This probably doesn’t come across as like anything novel or profound; nevertheless, the manner in which you integrate these two forms of exercise can, in fact, have a huge payoff in terms of weight loss, muscle building, strength increase, etc.

Continue reading to learn more about the captivating research findings regarding concurrent training and how you can implement it into an exercise program to optimize your training for weight loss on keto.

Why Combine Cardio and Resistance Training?

The great thing about not splitting your exercise regimen into exclusively resistance training or cardio is that you get the benefits of both worlds when you integrate the two.

Per example, research demonstrates that resistance training substantially boosts weight loss from cardio. Essentially, concurrent training (integrating anaerobic and aerobic exercise) considerably magnifies the positive metabolic ramifications of each mode of training by themselves.

In other words, you get more fat-loss from cardio when you integrate it with weightlifting, and in turn, your resistance training capacity increases as well. Pretty neat, right?

As previously alluded to, the majority of women feel that the most prudent way to “tone” their body is to slave away for hours on the elliptical and avoid weights at all cost. Or they might do some minimal resistance training, like bodyweight-only exercises (e.g. push ups, sit ups, etc.).

The truth is that the best option for “shaping your curves” and “toning your body” is to incorporate diligent strength training while keeping enough cardio in your routine for weight loss.

If all you do is continuously put yourself through long bouts of cardio, then you’ll end up decreasing your basal metabolic rate (and slowly lose muscle mass/lean tissue).

This means you will reduce your total body weight but increase your body-fat and you will look “skinny-fat.” Believe me, being skinny-fat is neither healthy nor a flattering look.

Do not succumb to the notion that you have to do a ton of cardio for a toned, shapely figure. The more resistance training you integrate, the more shapely your body will be, and the strength you build will empower you.

And again, you will not get bulky by doing so – that is a wild misconception that needs to die and never be spoken of again.

How-To: Concurrent Training for Weight Loss on Keto

There are two main approaches to concurrent training that I will detail below.

These protocols of training for weight loss on keto are based on scientific findings showing that cardio performed prior to resistance training has the tendency to be undesirable in regards to hormonal ramifications and may also inhibit weight training capacity.

Furthermore, the function of these routines, as iterated previously, is to optimize your time in the gym without compromising the beneficial outcomes. For that reason, your objective is to finish these workouts in one hour (or less).

Example Back Workout A: Resistance Training followed-up by Cardio

Exercise Sets Reps Rest Time Between Sets
Barbell Deadlifts 4 12, 10, 8, 6 60 seconds
Close-grip Lat Pulldowns 3 12, 10, 6 45 seconds
Bent-over Barbell Rows 3 12, 8, 6 60 seconds
Reverse Grip Barbell Curls 3 15, 12, 10 30 seconds
Cable Curls 3 12, 10, 8 30 seconds

Total Resistance Training Time (Approximately): 30-35 minutes

Follow-Up with 25-30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio on a machine of your choosing.

Example Back Workout B: Resistance Training Mixed with Cardio

Exercise Sets Reps Moderate-Pace Walk Between Sets (can be done on a treadmill or open space)
Barbell Deadlifts 4 12, 10, 8, 6 90 seconds
Close-grip Lat Pulldowns 3 12, 10, 6 60 seconds
Bent-over Barbell Rows 3 12, 8, 6 90 seconds
Reverse Grip Barbell Curls 3 15, 12, 10 60 seconds
Cable Curls 3 12, 10, 8 60 seconds

Total Workout Time (Approximately): 45-50 minutes

Note: This workout is less time-consuming but will be slightly more challenging since your rest periods are substituted for low/moderate-intensity cardio. However, this is a great option to get a great concurrent training session in when you are limited on time.

Can’t Train with Weights? Don’t Worry!

I realize not everyone is willing/able to train with weights or use any form of heavy resistance. Don’t worry, though! You can certainly keep training for weight loss on keto without every touching a barbell or weight machine. 

In this case, I would highly recommend you at the very least perform high-intensity interval training (HIIT) as part of your exercise regimen. Chances are you’ve heard of HIIT before, but if not, the following example will show you what it entails.  

Here’s a simple and effective HIIT protocol that you can perform pretty much anywhere there is open space. (If you prefer, you can also perform HIIT at the gym on a cardio machine; upright bicycles and Stairmasters are ideal.):

  1. Warm up your legs and joints with five minutes of speed walking or slow jogging
  2. Find a 50-100 yard area and sprint as fast as possible for 15 seconds or so (you should feel a “burn” in your legs by the end of each sprint)
  3. Perform “active recovery” between each sprint/interval by walking for 45 seconds or until you catch your breath
  4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 about 5-10 times (the goal is to increase your capacity each workout)
  5. Cool down with 10 minutes of light cardio, like walking, and then stretch

Why is HIIT best for weight loss?

Demonstrated by research, as few as 15 minutes of HIIT performed three times weekly encourages your body to burn more body fat than performing five hours of low-intensity cardio five times weekly.

Just think about that for a second: 45 total minutes of weekly HIIT burns more body fat than doing five whole hours of low-intensity cardio. It makes one wonder why walking casually on the treadmill for so many hours is so commonplace these days?

Not only are you saving a ton of time by doing HIIT, but you’re also getting better results! 

If you’re training for weight loss on keto, here’s a prudent way to structure your HIIT:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
20 Minutes HIIT Rest Day 20 Minutes HIIT 20 Minutes HIIT Rest Day 20 Minutes HIIT Rest Day

Training for Weight Loss on Keto Doesn’t Have to Be Hard

So there you have it, a concise look at how you can maximize your training for weight loss on keto! It’s safe to say that concurrent training is a great way to decrease wasted time in the gym and increase productivity.

Research contends that concurrent training is one of the most effective protocols for enhancing body composition and improving training capacity.

It’s simply a matter of executing this style of exercise in the proper manner to reap the most benefits of both aerobic and anaerobic training.

Give either/both of the training templates in this article and see how you like them. The key is to do them in under an hour and give it everything you’ve got while you’re training! Remember, you can always talk and check your cell phone after you finish exercising.