How many Calories does 1 hour of Weightlifting Burn?

Weightlifting, also known as resistance training or strength training, is a popular form of exercise that involves lifting weights to build muscle strength and endurance. Many people wonder how many calories can be burned during a one-hour weightlifting session. In this blog post, we will explore the factors that influence calorie burn during weightlifting, provide estimated calorie expenditure for different weightlifting activities, and offer tips for maximizing your workout.

How many Calories does 1 hour of Weightlifting Burn?

The number of calories burned during 1 hour of weightlifting can vary based on factors like body weight and workout intensity. On average, a person weighing around 155-185 pounds (70-84 kilograms) can burn approximately 200-400 calories during a one-hour weightlifting session.

Weightlifting ActivityCalories Burned (1 hour)
Light Intensity200-250 calories
Moderate Intensity300-400 calories
High Intensity450-600 calories

Factors Affecting Calorie Burn in Weightlifting:

The number of calories burned during weightlifting can vary based on several factors, including:

  1. Body Weight: Heavier individuals tend to burn more calories during exercise than lighter individuals due to the increased effort required to move their bodies.
  2. Workout Intensity: The level of effort and intensity you put into your weightlifting session will impact calorie expenditure. Higher intensity workouts generally burn more calories.
  3. Muscle Mass: Building muscle through weightlifting can increase your resting metabolic rate, meaning you burn more calories even at rest.
  4. Type of Exercises: Different weightlifting exercises engage different muscle groups and have varying calorie-burning potentials.
  5. Rest Periods: The length and frequency of rest periods between sets also influence calorie burn.

Calories Burned During Weightlifting:

The table below provides estimated calorie burn for various weightlifting activities during a one-hour session for a person weighing approximately 155-185 pounds (70-84 kilograms).

Weightlifting ActivityCalories Burned (1 hour)
Free Weight Squats250-350 calories
Deadlifts350-450 calories
Bench Press180-250 calories
Barbell Rows200-300 calories
Dumbbell Shoulder Press200-300 calories
Bicep Curls100-150 calories
Tricep Extensions150-200 calories
Leg Press250-350 calories
Pull-Ups350-450 calories
Push-Ups200-300 calories

Please note that these calorie estimates are approximate and can vary based on individual factors and workout intensity.

Tips for Maximizing Calorie Burn in Weightlifting:

To increase calorie burn during weightlifting, consider the following tips:

  1. Increase Intensity: Lift heavier weights or perform exercises with more repetitions to challenge your muscles and boost calorie expenditure.
  2. Incorporate Compound Movements: Compound exercises that engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously can burn more calories than isolated movements.
  3. Add Cardio Intervals: Incorporate short bursts of cardio exercises between weightlifting sets to keep your heart rate elevated.
  4. Minimize Rest Time: Keep rest periods between sets short to maintain a higher intensity and burn more calories.
  5. Include Circuit Training: Design a circuit-style workout that combines weightlifting exercises with minimal rest between sets for an effective calorie-burning workout.
  6. Stay Consistent: Regularly engage in weightlifting sessions to build muscle mass and increase overall calorie expenditure over time.

Can you burn 500 calories in an hour weight lifting?

Burning 500 calories in an hour solely through weightlifting is unlikely for most individuals. Weightlifting is generally not as calorie-intensive as cardiovascular exercises like running, cycling, or high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which can burn more calories in a shorter amount of time.

The number of calories burned during weightlifting depends on various factors such as body weight, workout intensity, and the specific exercises performed. On average, weightlifting can burn around 200-400 calories per hour for a person weighing around 155-185 pounds (70-84 kilograms).

To burn 500 calories in an hour, you would typically need to engage in higher-intensity cardio exercises or combine weightlifting with other calorie-burning activities. Remember that overall calorie burn is influenced by a combination of factors, including exercise, daily activity levels, and dietary habits.

Is lifting weights for 1 hour enough?

Lifting weights for 1 hour can be a valuable part of a comprehensive fitness routine, but whether it’s “enough” depends on your individual fitness goals and overall exercise plan.

Weightlifting provides numerous benefits, including building muscle strength, increasing bone density, and boosting metabolism. However, for a well-rounded fitness regimen, it’s essential to include other components such as cardiovascular exercise, flexibility training, and functional movements.

To determine if 1 hour of weightlifting is enough for you, consider the following:

  1. Fitness Goals: Define your specific objectives, whether it’s building strength, improving overall fitness, losing weight, or gaining muscle mass.
  2. Time Commitment: Assess how much time you can realistically dedicate to exercise each day or week.
  3. Variety: Ensure your exercise routine includes a mix of activities, such as cardiovascular exercises, flexibility work, and balance training, in addition to weightlifting.
  4. Rest and Recovery: Allow sufficient time for rest and recovery to prevent overtraining and reduce the risk of injuries.
  5. Intensity: Make sure your weightlifting routine challenges you appropriately. You can adjust the intensity by changing weights, repetitions, or exercises.

For many individuals, incorporating 1 hour of weightlifting into their weekly workout routine can be beneficial. However, it’s essential to create a well-rounded program that addresses your specific goals and includes various types of exercise to optimize overall fitness and health. Consulting with a fitness professional can help you design a personalized workout plan that aligns with your goals and lifestyle.

Does lifting burn calories all day?

Yes, lifting weights can burn calories all day, even after you’ve finished your workout. This phenomenon is known as the “afterburn effect” or “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption” (EPOC). After a weightlifting session, your body continues to consume more oxygen to restore and repair muscles, replenish energy stores, and regulate body temperature.

EPOC results in an increased metabolic rate, leading to a higher calorie burn for several hours, and sometimes even up to 24-48 hours, after the workout. The intensity and duration of the weightlifting session can influence the magnitude of the afterburn effect. High-intensity workouts and exercises that engage multiple muscle groups tend to elicit a more significant afterburn effect.

It’s important to note that the afterburn effect contributes to additional calorie burn, but its impact is relatively small compared to the total calorie burn throughout the day from other activities and daily metabolic functions. Nevertheless, weightlifting can be an effective component of a well-rounded fitness routine for overall calorie expenditure and maintaining or building lean muscle mass.

Does lifting weights burn belly fat?

Yes, lifting weights can contribute to burning belly fat, but it’s essential to understand how fat loss works.

Spot reduction, which is the idea of targeting fat loss in specific areas of the body, is a myth. When you perform weightlifting exercises that engage various muscle groups, including the core, you will burn calories and build muscle strength. This can lead to a more toned appearance and improved muscle definition in the abdominal area.

However, to effectively lose belly fat, you need to create a calorie deficit by burning more calories than you consume. This involves a combination of regular exercise, including weightlifting, and a balanced diet.

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Lifting weights helps to increase lean muscle mass, which in turn raises your basal metabolic rate (BMR). A higher BMR means your body burns more calories at rest, even when you’re not exercising. Additionally, weightlifting promotes fat loss by increasing the post-exercise calorie burn through the afterburn effect (EPOC), as mentioned in the previous response.

To target belly fat specifically, focus on overall fat loss through a combination of weightlifting, cardiovascular exercise, and a healthy diet. Remember that consistency and patience are key, as fat loss takes time and effort. Consult with a fitness professional or a registered dietitian to create a personalized plan that aligns with your specific goals and needs.

Does lifting weights burn fat?

Yes, lifting weights can burn fat. When you engage in resistance or weightlifting exercises, your body requires energy to perform the movements. This energy comes from stored carbohydrates and fat in your body.

During weightlifting, you create tiny tears in your muscle fibers. As your body repairs these tears during the recovery process, it expends energy (calories). This process, known as the afterburn effect or excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), can lead to increased calorie burn even after your workout is complete.

Additionally, lifting weights helps increase muscle mass. Muscle tissue is more metabolically active than fat tissue, meaning it burns more calories at rest. As you build more muscle, your resting metabolic rate increases, leading to a higher calorie burn throughout the day.

However, it’s important to note that to effectively burn fat, you need to create a calorie deficit by burning more calories through physical activity and daily living than you consume through your diet. A combination of weightlifting, cardiovascular exercises, and a balanced diet is essential for fat loss and overall health. Consult with a fitness professional or a registered dietitian to create a personalized plan that suits your goals and needs.

Can I lose weight by lifting weights only?

Losing weight solely through lifting weights is possible, but it may not be the most efficient approach for everyone. Weightlifting can contribute to weight loss by burning calories during the workout and increasing your metabolic rate, especially if you build lean muscle mass. However, creating a calorie deficit is essential for weight loss, which means burning more calories than you consume.

While weightlifting can help you build muscle and improve body composition, combining it with other forms of exercise, such as cardiovascular activities and a balanced diet, is generally more effective for weight loss. Cardio exercises like running, cycling, or high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can burn more calories in a shorter amount of time and aid in creating a calorie deficit.

A well-rounded approach that includes both weightlifting and cardio exercises, along with a healthy diet, can lead to sustainable weight loss and overall improved fitness and health. Additionally, consider factors like individual preferences, fitness level, and any pre-existing medical conditions when designing a weight loss plan. If you’re unsure where to start, consulting with a fitness professional or a registered dietitian can help create a personalized and effective weight loss strategy for you.

Does heavier lifting burn more calories?

Yes, heavier lifting can burn more calories compared to lifting lighter weights. The number of calories burned during weightlifting is influenced by the intensity and effort put into the exercise. Lifting heavier weights requires more effort and engages more muscle fibers, leading to a higher calorie expenditure.

When you lift heavier weights, your muscles need to work harder to overcome the resistance, leading to increased energy expenditure. This can result in a higher metabolic demand and an elevated afterburn effect (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption or EPOC) after the workout. EPOC causes your body to continue burning calories at an increased rate even after you finish your workout.

However, it’s essential to perform heavy lifting safely and with proper form to prevent injuries. If you’re new to weightlifting or unsure about how to lift heavier weights, consider working with a qualified fitness professional who can guide you through a safe and effective weightlifting routine tailored to your goals and fitness level.

What lifts burn the most calories?

Exercises that involve large muscle groups and high-intensity movements tend to burn the most calories. These lifts are typically compound exercises that engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously. Here are some examples of lifts that are known for their calorie-burning potential:

  1. Deadlifts: Deadlifts work the muscles in your lower back, glutes, hamstrings, and core, making them one of the most effective calorie-burning lifts.
  2. Squats: Squats target the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and core. They are excellent for calorie burn due to the high energy demand from the large muscle groups involved.
  3. Clean and Jerk: This Olympic lift combines explosive movements, working the legs, back, shoulders, and arms. It requires a significant amount of energy and burns a substantial number of calories.
  4. Kettlebell Swings: Kettlebell swings involve a powerful hip hinge movement that activates the posterior chain and core muscles, resulting in a high-calorie burn.
  5. Burpees: While not a traditional lift, burpees are a full-body exercise that combines strength, cardiovascular conditioning, and calorie burn.
  6. Thrusters: Thrusters are a combination of front squats and overhead presses, targeting the legs, shoulders, and triceps, making them highly effective for calorie expenditure.
  7. Rowing: While not a lift, rowing exercises, such as rowing machine workouts, engage the upper and lower body, providing a full-body workout and burning significant calories.

Is it better to lift weights or do cardio first?

The order in which you perform weightlifting and cardio exercises can depend on your specific fitness goals and preferences. Both approaches have their benefits, and the choice ultimately comes down to what works best for you. Here are some considerations for both options:

1. Cardio First, Then Weightlifting:


  • Cardio exercises, such as running or cycling, can serve as an effective warm-up, raising your heart rate and body temperature before weightlifting.
  • Doing cardio first may help you burn some calories and reduce fatigue during weightlifting, allowing you to lift with better form and intensity.
  • It can be a suitable approach if your primary goal is cardiovascular fitness or weight loss.

2. Weightlifting First, Then Cardio:


  • Weightlifting with fresh muscles may allow you to lift heavier weights and focus on proper technique, leading to better strength gains and muscle development.
  • Resistance training can deplete glycogen (stored energy in muscles), making your body rely more on fat for energy during subsequent cardio, potentially enhancing fat burning.
  • If building strength and muscle mass is your primary goal, starting with weightlifting can be more effective.

3. Alternating Between Cardio and Weightlifting:

You can also choose to alternate between cardio and weightlifting on different days or within the same workout session. This approach can offer the benefits of both forms of exercise without compromising on either.

4. Consider Your Preferences:

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Ultimately, the best approach is the one that you enjoy and can stick to consistently. If you prefer one type of exercise over the other, starting with your preferred activity may help you stay motivated and committed to your fitness routine.

5. Recovery:

Regardless of the order, it’s essential to consider recovery between workouts. Give your muscles time to recover and repair before engaging in intense exercise on consecutive days. Adequate rest is crucial for avoiding overtraining and reducing the risk of injuries.

Is 2 hours at the gym too much?

Spending 2 hours at the gym can be excessive for most people, but it ultimately depends on the individual’s fitness level, goals, and the intensity of the workout. The duration of a gym session should be balanced to avoid overtraining and burnout. Here are some considerations:

1. Intensity: A high-intensity workout for 2 hours can lead to overtraining and increase the risk of injury. It’s crucial to listen to your body and avoid pushing yourself too hard.

2. Workout Variety: Spending 2 hours at the gym can be reasonable if you are engaging in a mix of activities, such as weightlifting, cardio, flexibility exercises, and rest periods. However, doing the same exercise for an extended period may not be beneficial.

3. Rest and Recovery: Giving your body sufficient time to recover between workouts is essential for muscle growth and overall health. Overtraining can lead to fatigue and hinder progress.

4. Individual Fitness Level: Beginners or individuals with a lower fitness level may find 2 hours too demanding. It’s better to start with shorter workout sessions and gradually increase the duration as your fitness improves.

5. Time Management: Spending 2 hours at the gym can be time-consuming. If you have limited time, consider focusing on shorter, more intense workouts to make the most of your available time.

6. Lifestyle and Schedule: Consider your lifestyle and daily commitments when planning your gym sessions. Spending excessive time at the gym may not be sustainable in the long run.

7. Quality vs. Quantity: The quality of your workout is more important than the quantity of time spent. Focus on effective exercises, proper form, and challenging yourself within a reasonable timeframe.

In general, most individuals can achieve their fitness goals with 45 minutes to 1.5 hours of exercise per session, depending on the intensity and workout variety. If you feel that 2 hours at the gym is necessary for your goals and you can manage it without compromising your health and well-being, it may be suitable.

However, always prioritize quality, recovery, and consistency in your fitness routine. If you’re uncertain about the right workout duration for your needs, consider consulting with a fitness professional who can design a personalized plan based on your goals and individual circumstances.

Is 2 hours of weightlifting too much?

Yes, 2 hours of weightlifting in a single session is generally considered too much for most people. Weightlifting is a form of high-intensity resistance training, and extended sessions can lead to overtraining, increased risk of injury, and muscle fatigue. Quality of exercise and recovery are crucial factors to consider when designing a workout plan.

Here are some reasons why 2 hours of weightlifting may be excessive:

  1. Overtraining: Prolonged weightlifting sessions can lead to overtraining, where the body doesn’t have enough time to recover between workouts. Overtraining can result in fatigue, decreased performance, and an increased risk of injury.
  2. Muscle Fatigue: Extended weightlifting sessions can lead to muscle fatigue, reducing the effectiveness of the exercises and potentially hindering progress.
  3. Diminished Focus and Form: As the workout session gets longer, focus and form may deteriorate, increasing the risk of injuries.
  4. Lack of Time for Other Activities: Spending 2 hours weightlifting can limit time for other important aspects of fitness, such as cardiovascular exercises, flexibility training, and rest.

Instead of a single long session, consider breaking up your weightlifting routine into shorter, more focused workouts throughout the week. Aim for 45 minutes to 1.5 hours of weightlifting per session, depending on your fitness level and goals. Ensure you have adequate rest days to allow your muscles to recover and grow.

If you prefer longer workouts or have specific training requirements, consider working with a fitness professional who can design a safe and effective weightlifting program tailored to your needs. Remember that individual fitness levels and goals vary, so it’s essential to find a workout routine that is sustainable, enjoyable, and aligns with your specific objectives.


1. Is it better to lift weights or do cardio first?

The order of weightlifting and cardio depends on individual goals and preferences. Some prefer starting with cardio to warm up, while others begin with weights for strength gains. Experiment and find what works best for you.

2. Is 2 hours at the gym too much?

Yes, 2 hours at the gym can be excessive for most people. Quality over quantity is important, and workouts lasting that long may lead to overtraining and increased risk of injury.

3. Is 2 hours of weightlifting too much?

Yes, 2 hours of weightlifting in a single session is generally considered too much. Extended weightlifting sessions can lead to overtraining and muscle fatigue.

4. Is it enough to lift 3 days a week?

Lifting weights 3 days a week can be sufficient for many people to build strength and muscle. It allows for adequate rest and recovery between sessions.

5. Will I lose muscle if I lift every day?

Lifting weights every day without sufficient rest can lead to overtraining and hinder muscle growth. Muscles need time to recover and grow stronger.

6. How to burn 2,000 calories a day?

Burning 2,000 calories a day is challenging and not recommended for most people. Extreme calorie burn can be harmful and unsustainable.

7. How soon will I see results from lifting weights?

Results vary based on individual factors, but with consistency and proper nutrition, noticeable changes can appear within a few weeks to a couple of months.

8. What burns more calories: cardio or weightlifting?

Cardio generally burns more calories per minute during the exercise, but weightlifting can lead to a higher afterburn effect, resulting in additional calorie burn after the workout.

9. Is cardio better than weightlifting for fat loss?

Both cardio and weightlifting play essential roles in fat loss. A combination of both, along with a balanced diet, is often most effective.

10. How many calories is 1 kg?

1 kg of body weight is roughly equivalent to 7,700 calories. To lose 1 kg, you need a calorie deficit of about 7,700 calories.

11. How to burn 3,500 calories a day?

Burning 3,500 calories a day is not advisable or feasible for most people. Extreme calorie burn can be harmful to health.

12. How many calories is 10,000 steps?

The number of calories burned from 10,000 steps varies based on factors like body weight and walking pace but is generally around 300-500 calories.

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13. Why am I getting stronger but not losing fat?

Strength gains and fat loss are separate processes. To lose fat, ensure you’re in a calorie deficit through a balanced diet and exercise.

14. Why am I flabby after working out?

Flabbiness can be due to excess body fat or lack of muscle tone. A combination of strength training and fat loss can help address this.

15. What exercise burns the most fat?

High-intensity exercises like HIIT and compound movements burn more fat in a shorter time.

16. What happens if you only lift weights and no cardio?

Only lifting weights without cardio can still improve strength and muscle, but incorporating cardio enhances overall cardiovascular health and calorie burn.

17. How heavy should I lift to lose weight?

Lift weights that challenge you within your ability. Focus on proper form and gradually increase resistance as you get stronger.

18. Why am I gaining weight after working out for 3 weeks?

Weight fluctuations can occur due to various factors like water retention or muscle gain, not necessarily fat gain.

19. Do I need cardio if I lift weights?

Cardio can complement weightlifting by improving cardiovascular health, aiding in fat loss, and boosting overall fitness.

20. What happens to my body if I only lift weights?

Lifting weights can increase strength, build muscle, and improve body composition but may not optimize cardiovascular fitness.

21. Should I skip cardio to build muscle?

Cardio can be included without hindering muscle gains if nutrition and recovery are adequately managed.

22. Should I eat a lot when lifting weights?

A balanced diet with sufficient protein and calories is essential for fueling workouts and supporting muscle growth.

23. What burns fat the fastest?

High-intensity exercises and combining cardio and strength training are effective for fat burning.

24. Is it better to do more reps or more weight?

Both have their benefits, but lifting heavier weights with proper form can lead to strength and muscle gains.

25. How can I burn 700 calories in 1 hour?

Burning 700 calories in an hour requires high-intensity activities like running, cycling, or HIIT workouts.

26. How can I burn 5000 calories a day?

Burning 5,000 calories a day is not advisable and is not sustainable for most individuals.

27. How to burn 1,000 calories in a workout?

Burning 1,000 calories in a workout requires an intense, prolonged session of high-intensity exercises.

28. How often should you lift weights?

The frequency of weightlifting depends on your goals and recovery ability. 3-4 days per week is common for most individuals.

29. Is 20 minutes of cardio enough after lifting weights?

20 minutes of cardio can be beneficial as a cooldown or extra calorie burn, but longer sessions are generally recommended for cardiovascular fitness.

30. How long should a workout be?

A workout duration of 45 minutes to 1.5 hours is typically sufficient for most people.

31. What is considered overtraining?

Overtraining occurs when the body doesn’t have adequate time to recover from exercise, leading to fatigue, decreased performance, and increased injury risk.

32. Why am I not losing weight working out 5 days a week?

Weight loss also depends on nutrition and calorie intake. Ensure you’re in a calorie deficit for fat loss.

33. Is it good to burn 1000 calories a day?

Burning 1,000 calories a day is not recommended for most people and can be harmful to health.

34. How do I know if I’m lifting heavy enough?

Lifting heavy enough involves challenging yourself with weights that allow you to complete the desired number of reps with proper form.

35. What is the 2 2 2 rule in weightlifting?

The 2 2 2 rule refers to two seconds for the lifting phase, two seconds for the holding phase, and two seconds for the lowering phase of each repetition.

36. Should you sweat when lifting weights?

Sweating during weightlifting is normal and indicates an increase in body temperature and energy expenditure.


In conclusion, weightlifting can be an effective way to burn calories and build strength. The number of calories burned during a one-hour weightlifting session varies based on individual factors and workout intensity. Incorporate variety, challenge yourself, and stay consistent to make the most of your weightlifting workouts and achieve your fitness goals.

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