Did you know the majority of body fat burned happens after a workout? If you are only doing cardio, then you are missing out on 67% more fat burn after exercise. Cardiovascular exercise is great and a necessary piece to any weight loss program that generates an extended calorie burn of up to about 12 hours. However, strength training could prove more important than you may think boasting an extended calorie burn of up to 72 hours. So working out Monday keeps your body burning even more calories on Tuesday even if you are not working out on Tuesday. It's actually pretty cool because by incorporating strength training you can spend less time in the gym while seeing boosted results fast.
Let me explain a model exercise program you can use to spend way less time in the gym due to the extended calorie burn you see after each workout. For this example program you will be working out three days a week for approximately one hour each time. Assuming you don't want to work out on the weekends let's say the workout days are Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On these days you will be doing strength training for 45 minutes followed by 15 minutes of high intensity cardio.
For strength training you will want to primarily focus on full body exercises that incorporate multiple muscle groups and multiple joints. These types of exercises are better known as "compound". Some examples of compound exercises you can do are: bench press, squats, dead-lifts, lunges, rows, and push-ups. There are many more but that is a good list for starters. Pick four of those and that is your strength routine. This type of program allows your body rest in between each workout while still burning calories on those days of rest.
Your cardio is going to be short and sweat. By sweat I mean, high intensity. High intensity is the most effective and efficient way to improve cardiovascular function and increase the body's metabolism boosting fat loss. What would you consider hard: sprinting, running, light jog? Your answer is going to be your high intensity exercise that you will be doing for one minute in combination with one minute of rest repeated for the 15 minute duration of your cardio time.
Combining both strength training and high intensity cardio is a proven way to efficiently burn more fats up to 72 hours after a workout. If you cannot dedicate 3 days a week to exercise then you are not ready to see results!