30-day fat-burn challenge: slim down and tone up in just one month

You’ll get slim and trim in just 30 days with this heart-pumping cardio workout routine

Woman doing 30-day fat-burn workout challenge
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Our bodies were made to move, so with all that sitting around we do (more so than ever since Covid-19 confined us all to our homes), it’s important we get our heart rate up regularly.

‘Cardio exercise (aka aerobic exercise) is a vital part of our weekly workout,’ says personal trainer Seana Forbes at Freeletics. ‘It helps us burn calories and fat, increase bone density and improve energy levels, while reducing stress and helping us to sleep better.’

Plus, in the long-term it will strengthen your heart and up your fitness and stamina levels. Winning!

If you’re doing it right, your heart will be pumping, your breathing rate will be up and you’ll sweat, as you get those muscles working and burn those cals. 

To maximise your fat-burning potential, aim to workout at around 70% of your maximum heart rate (to work this out, subtract your age from 220), then intermittently turn up the intensity to ramp up your total cal burn. Use one of the best fitness trackers to monitor your work rate, or maybe even a dedicated heart rate monitor.

Ready to get a fighting fit, fat-free bod in just a month? Master the following six key moves, and then embark on to our 30-day challenge program below. Good luck!

Fat-burn challenge: 6 key cardio moves

These exercises target your whole body, burn fat and build muscle strength and endurance. Master them with the instructions below, and then use our 30-day workout routine to put them into action.

  • Lunges

Lunges

(Image credit: Future)

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Take a big step forward with your right leg, ensuring your weight is distributed evenly over both legs. Bend both knees to form right angles, and ensure your knee and ankle are in one line. Drive up using your front heel and repeat on the other side. 

  • Burpees

Burpees

(Image credit: Future)

Stand with your feet slightly apart and your hands by your sides. Jump down to the floor in a squat position, kicking your feet back until you’re in a plank position. Perform a push-up (if you can), then go back to a squat position and jump up to standing, raising your arms with your hands above your head. Repeat.

  • Plank

Plank

(Image credit: Future)

Support your body with your hands and the balls of your feet and form a straight line from your head to your feet. Elbows should be directly below your shoulders and feet shoulder-width apart. Engage your abs and hold for allotted time. 

  • Mountain climbers

Mountain climbers

(Image credit: Future)

Start in a plank position. One at a time, bring each leg forward towards your chest, then back to plank position, as fast as you can. Keep your hips stable and core engaged. 

  • Jumping jacks

Jumping jacks

(Image credit: Future)

Stand with feet together, arms by your sides. Jump your feet at least shoulder-width apart, while simultaneously raising your hands up to the ceiling. Jump back to starting position and repeat. 

  • Squat jumps

Squat jumps

(Image credit: Future)

Stand with your feet no wider than shoulder-width apart. Lower yourself into a squat, keeping your heels on the ground and directly below your knees. Once in a low squat, drive your hips forward and jump up, pushing your arms back for extra lift. Land softly back into a squat to repeat. 

Want to target a specific area?

30-day fat-burning workout plan

Ready to put those moves into action? Get going with your 30-day abs workout plan below! You can save the handy grid below to your device, or else bookmark this page for reference.

But before you put the moves above into action, a word of warning from Seana, who says: ‘Don’t sacrifice form for fat-burning, as this can lead to injury.’ Use a mirror to ensure you’re doing exercises correctly. 

She adds: ‘Cardio workouts can be strenuous, so ensure you’re refueling properly.’ Her go-to is humous and oatcakes – a perfect balance of carbs and protein. 

OK - let’s burn that fat!

30-day fat-burn challenge plan

(Image credit: Future)

Day 1

5 x Lunges

5 x Jumping jacks

5 x Burpees

Day 2

6 x Lunges

6 x Jumping jacks

6 x Burpees

Day 3

7 x Lunges

7 x Jumping jacks

7 x Burpees

Day 4

8 x Lunges

8 x Jumping jacks

8 x Burpees

Day 5

REST DAY! Use a foam roller to do some recovery exercises. Check out our guide to the best foam rollers if you don’t already have one.

Day 6

9 x Lunges

9 x Jumping jacks

9 x Burpees

Day 7

10 x Lunges

10 x Jumping jacks

10 x Burpees

Day 8

11 x Lunges

11 x Jumping jacks

11 x Burpees

Day 9

12 x Lunges

12 x Jumping jacks

12 x Burpees

Day 10

REST DAY

Day 11

14 x Lunges

14 x Jumping jacks

14 x Burpees

Day 12

16 x Lunges

16 x Jumping jacks

16 x Burpees

Day 13

18 x Lunges

18 x Jumping jacks

18 x Burpees

Day 14

20 x Lunges

20 x Jumping jacks

20 x Burpees

Day 15

REST DAY

Day 16

5 x Mountain climbers

5 x Squat jumps

5 seconds x Plank

Day 17

6 x Mountain climbers

6 x Squat jumps

10 seconds x Plank 

Day 18

7 x Mountain climbers

7 x Squat jumps

15 seconds x Plank

Day 19

8 x Mountain climbers

8 x Squat jumps

20 seconds x Plank

Day 20

REST DAY

Day 21

9 x Mountain climbers

9 x Squat jumps

25 seconds x Plank

Day 22

10 x Mountain climbers

10 x Squat jumps

30 seconds x Plank

Day 23

11 x Mountain climbers

11 x Squat jumps

35 seconds x Plank

Day 24

12 x Mountain climbers

12 x Squat jumps

40 seconds x Plank

Day 25

REST DAY

Day 26

14 x Mountain climbers

14 x Squat jumps

45 seconds x Plank

Day 27

16 x Mountain climbers

16 x Squat jumps

50 seconds x Plank

Day 28

18 x Mountain climbers

18 x Squat jumps

55 seconds x Plank 

Day 29

20 x Mountain climbers

20 x Squat jumps

60 seconds x Plank 

Day 30

REST DAY

You’ve completed our 30-day fat-burn challenge - well done!

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