What Is a Shredding Exercise?

The term "shredding exercise" refers to a workout that helps you burn fat and make your muscles appear more defined. Many programs promise to deliver those results, but success depends upon the right combination of diet, cardio exercises and weightlifting exercises. A slow and steady weight loss of 1 to 2 lbs. per week will make your results lasting and safe.

A young woman is doing plyometric exercises.
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Fat Burning

To lose 1 lb. of fat, you must burn 3,500 calories more than you eat. Those 3,500 calories represent total energy burned through the day, whether through regular activities, exercise or what your body needs to maintain regular functioning. That deficit causes the body to burn fat stores for energy.

Cardio Training

Frequent and sustained cardio training is one of the best ways to burn fat and boost metabolism. One of the best cardio exercises to perform is running, according to the American College of Sports Medicine, as it burns a high number of calories per hour and improves cardiovascular health. ACSM recommends training five days a week, with a minimum of 60 minutes per session.

High Intensity Interval Training

High intensity interval training, or HIIT, is a type of training that involves short bursts of high-intensity intervals of exercise combined with lower-intensity intervals. One example is all-out sprinting for 30 seconds between 60-second jogging sessions. One workout would involve five to 10 of those high-intensity cycles. This type of workout is designed to burn large amounts of fat in a short period of time.

Weight Training

You might not find the motivation to burn away all that fat if you don't have the muscles to show off underneath. A well-rounded, symmetrical weightlifting program will build your muscles and make them something to be admired. Choose a split workout, or an all-body workout, and work out three to four times a week. Work all major muscle groups, and leave 48 hours between working the same muscles to prevent overtraining. Another benefit of weight training is the boost it gives your metabolism.


Popular shredding exercise programs include Jillian Michaels "30 Day Shred," "Shredding for the Wedding" by David Barton and P90X by Beachbody. If you wish to have a workout plan provided for you along with diet suggestions, any of these programs could work for you, depending on your fitness goals and current fitness level.

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