Accelerate Fat Loss With Combination Exercises

When clients seek me out they may have varied levels of experience, different backgrounds, or contrasting ideas of what it means to “be fit”, but one thing is always the same. They want to lose fat and they want to do it quickly. This generally leads into a discussion about healthy nutrition habits, but after that is out of the way we get to discuss exercise programming.

While I can’t physically control what the client does when they are not with me, I can certainly dictate the execution and the pace of the workout. Since fat loss is maximized during fast paced weight training my go-to moves are always combination exercises. Combination exercises (sometimes referred to as hybrid exercises) are when 2 or more individual exercises are performed together to effectively train multiple areas of the body at the same time. This leads to an increase in the amount of work that can be completed in the same amount of time and often leaves the trainee breathless due to the high cardiac demands. In addition to elevating you heart rate, combination exercises often require more coordination and tend to be more core demanding.

Options are limitless when it comes to combining exercises, but here are 3 of my favorites and a sample workout:

Step Up Balance to Reverse Lunge:

This one is brutal on the lower body. There is quite a bit of balance required and by bringing one leg up to a balance position during the step up proper hip extension is completed every rep. This can be done with bodyweight or additional weight can be added as desired.


Step up onto a step or bench with your right leg while bringing your left knee up hip height. Pause for one second, then step your left leg back to the floor and bringing your right leg back into a reverse lunge. Do all your reps on one side then switch to the other side.

Step Up Balance Press to Reverse Lunge:

This is a version of the previous exercise that adds in additional weight and an upper body movement. The side that does the pressing is the opposite of the side that performs the balance.


Complete this version the same as the one above, but add a press at the top of the step up.

Squat to Row:

This is probably one of the most common combination exercises and for good reason. This move allows to you squat with good depth and still maintain upright positioning. The core and back are notably challenged as well.


Attach a row handle (I like to play with different grips personally) to a low cable pulley or use a resistance band wrapped around an object at a level just lower than knee height. Grab the handle and walk back about 3-5 steps. Maintaining good posture, push your hips back and bend your knees until your upper legs are parallel to the floor. Then, stand up and row back towards the bottom of your rib cage and hold your squeeze for 1 second at the top.

Push Up to Renegade Row:

This is a great upper body combo that not only works your back and chest (as well as the muscles that assist), but it also kills your core. The beauty of this exercise is how well balanced it is, because you get an even amount of pushing vs pulling. This exercise can be very humbling so start with moderate weight and work your way up.


Using dumbbells that won’t roll, assume a push up position with your hands facing each other and your feet wider than shoulder width. Complete one push up and at the top row one hand up towards your rib cage while trying not to turn your hips. Next row your other hand up also not trying to move your hips. That’s one rep.

And Now For the Sample Workout:

4 Rounds Of:

Step Up Balance / Press / Reverse Lunge
Chin Ups or Reverse Grip Pulldowns

4 Rounds Of:

Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift
Push Up / Renegade Row