All of us would like to be leaner. Yet many of us do not know the most effective way to utilize and burn our fat stores. First, diet is THE most important factor in body composition. If you are not eating right, all the training in the world will not change your fat percentage. When you are training though, you need to target as much muscle mass at once as possible. Muscle mass is metabolically active, it requires a lot of calories to do work, repair, and sustain itself. To burn the most amount of calories, while in the gym, and increase your resting metabolism outside of the gym, you need to target large muscles. Compound, multi-muscle, multi-joint movements, burn calories. You are genetically predisposed to store fat in specific amounts and areas on your body. For men, the first place we are going to store fat and the last place we are going to lose it, is our stomachs. Women, the first place you are going to store additional calories, and the last place you will lose it, is typically, hips and thighs. You cannot spot reduce these areas. Guys, doing 1000 sit-ups a day will not burn fat around your abdominal area. It may herniate a vertebral disc, but it does not require a lot of energy. You may have the worlds greatest looking six pack under your fat stores, but you will never see it. Women, the abductor, adductor (inner, outer thigh) machine will never tone your thighs the way you want them too. You must burn fat as a whole in your body. To do this you need to use your larger muscles, burn more calories, and set your self up to storing less, by burning more energy than you consume. So what muscles should you be using? Your legs! 70% of the muscle in you body is below your waist. Start using them! If you want a flatter stomach, leaner thighs, or more sculpted arms, start training the most calorically demanding part of your body. Guys, science has proven testosterone release significantly increases as a result of intense lower limb training. If you want to add lean mass everywhere in your body, increase your metabolism, and burn more fat. Hit the legs hard. Ladies, squatting and dead lifting will tone and sculpt your inner/outer thighs, and buttocks, more effectively than any isolated inner outer/thigh movement or hip extension movement. Wouldn't you rather tone those areas, and burn fat at the same time? Training legs alone will yield a leaner, more scultped physique than upper body alone. And no, running does not count as leg training. Check out my blog on Cardio vs Resistance training for more info. So what about the upper body. Guys want a bigger chest and arms, women, toner shoulders and triceps. You dont need to isolate these small muscles. Add a few compound upper limb movements to target these areas and burn calories. Two pressing movements, and two pulling movements within 1 full body weight training routine is a great way to burn calories and target the areas you are looking for. A horizontal and vertical pulling motion will hit your biceps twice within one workout, burn lots of calories, and improve your posture. Ladies, a horizontal and vertical push hits your triceps twice, while burning lots of calories. To conclude: the more muscles you use at once, the more calories you are going to burn, the less fat you will store on your entire body.