The Best Fat Burning Exercise You are Not Doing

They say this guy lifts odd objects…

If you are one of the rare people that adheres to a regular exercise routine that includes odd object lifting,  give yourself a pat on the back; if you even include odd object lifting from time-to-time you deserve a thumbs up (in a nice way.) Here’s the thing, most people are not doing these exercises regularly if at all, but they are the best way to burn fat and build muscle throughout the body. So what is the best odd object lifting exercise? Could it be the Atlas stone or tire flipping? Definitely great muscle-building exercises, but even more challenging is the dead, shifting weight of sandbags.

Sandbags present a great opportunity to blast every muscle in the body, anytime and anywhere, with minimal investment on your part. Picking up a sandbag means having to make adjustments as you lift. Every part of the core from the gluteus maximus to the top of the abdominal wall needs to be contracted, and the grip on the bag must be strong. Even a shoulder-to-shoulder press demands whole body stability to execute correctly. For this reason, an equivalent workout performed with sandbags will burn more calories and involve more muscles.

Sandbag workouts incorporate many of the same exercises found in any type of training, only with a sandbag the body works harder. Some great exercises for this tool are the clean and jerk, “gravedigger,” snatch, shoulder-to-shoulder and standing military press, front squats and lunges. Put them together and try ‘sandbag burpees;’ guaranteed to get the heart pumping. All of this sandbag training affects the core muscles in every exercise, but doing Turkish Get-Ups or Good Mornings with sandbags presents and entirely new challenge for these muscle groups. Try it once and you will be a believer, just start out light.

There are two ways to get your hands on some sandbags. One is to go to and buy the super tough bags they sell. Another is to grab some old duffle bags or backpacks, head to the local Home Depot, Lowes or Ace Hardware and purchase 50 lb. bags of play sand. With these, wrap them tightly in trash bags and seal with duct tape. Stuff them in your backpack or duffle bag and you are ready to work out. The savings is significant and if they start to leak, they are cheap to replace.

Sandbags are easy to make and cheap, but definitely offer an exciting and hardcore workout.  Check out the exercises from Josh Henkin below for some ideas:

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Dropping into the Burpee
Second step of the Burpee
Top of the Burpee
Good Mornings
The Sandbag Lunge


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