The Fat-Burning Workout

From Fat to Firm in 24 Days


By Joyce L. Vedral, PhD

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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around November 29, 2009. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

Award-winning fitness expert Joyce Vedral–author of Now or Never and The 12-Minute Total-Body Workout–offers an age-fighting plan to tone muscles and burn off fat.



A Note from the Publisher

The ideas, procedures, and suggestions contained in this book are not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician. All matters regarding your health require medical supervision.

All rights reserved.

Warner Books, Inc.

Hachette Book Group

237 Park Avenue

New York, NY 10017

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First eBook Edition: November 2009

ISBN: 978-0-446-57125-8


To Joann Davis, for guiding this project with sound judgment and generosity of time and spirit

To Colleen Kaplin, for your lively, energetic reading of the manuscript and for your timely suggestions

To Anne Twomey, for your willingness to treat this project with special care and attention

To Larry Kirshbaum, Nansey Neiman, Ling Lucas, and Ellen Herrick, for your enthusiasm and support

To Don Banks, photographer, for your creative ideas for photography and for your gifted execution of the photographs

To Joe and Betty Weider, for encouraging me in all of my fitness projects, and for providing the foundation and basis for bodybuilding in your wonderful magazines, Shape, Muscle and Fitness, Mens Fitness, and Flex

To friends and family—for being there, for loving, and for caring

To Kent Maurer—for your example of an outstanding physique and an equally delightful mind.

To John Cordovano, for being there when it's important

To Cameo Kneuer, Miss National Fitness, and my friend, for your sense of humor and your steadfast presence. I love you

To Jodi Pollutro, talented hair and makeup artist, for knowing how to make a person's beauty shine

To Maria Viviane, owner of Sal-Mar Beauty Salon in Levittown, Long Island, and Jennifer Donato and Andrea Messina for your unmatchable manicures, hair, skin, and beauty care

To Gus Stefanidis, Mr. Greece and my wise confidant—a man who knows many secrets about diet and exercise

To Andy Sivert, Mr. North America, owner of Mr. America's Gym in Farmingdale, Long Island, where one can work out with the most talented people in the sport


Fat is the enemy. It causes our bodies to appear round and shapeless. It makes it impossible for us to zip up our jeans, or even get them past our hips, and what's more, it's bad for our health. Yet time and again, no matter how many times we diet it off, it returns to plague us. What is the answer to the problem? How can we get rid of the ugly fat on our bodies, once and for all, and keep it off?

If fat is the enemy, muscle is the friend. It takes up a lot less space than fat does, and what's more, it actually burns calories for us—even when we're sleeping. I'm not talking about hulking muscles—the Arnold Schwarzenegger kind. I'm referring to normal, healthy working tissue that give our bodies shape and form. So how do you get rid of fat and stock up on muscle? Health and nutrition experts are in agreement: You can't get rid of your excess body fat and keep it off unless you not only diet but exercise too. But exactly how do you diet and exercise to get and keep the fat off your potentially beautiful body?

In the following pages, you will find a workout that guarantees to rid you of those ugly rolls of fat in a matter of weeks, and to replace them with tight, toned, feminine muscles. You can choose to exercise twenty, thirty, or forty minutes, three to five times a week. If you work out for twenty to thirty minutes four times a week, you will lose a minimum of five pounds of fat in twenty-four days, keep it off, and you'll get tight and toned at the same time, and continue to lose as much fat as you need to lose—as you follow the plan. It's important to note that I said you will lose five pounds of fat. You see, you will probably lose about ten pounds altogether—the other five will be water, because if you haven't been eating properly, chances are, you're also retaining water. As you follow the fat-burning eating plan, you'll eliminate that problem.

But the most important aspect of the fat-burning workout is that you will keep the weight off. The food plan and exercise program together let you lose the weight for good, and get tight, toned, and shapely at the same time.


I wrote this book for all of us: for women who are impatient and even desperate, for people who have no time to play games, for people who are tired of being fooled by quick weight-loss programs that don't get you in shape. I wrote it for those who are willing to work hard for a reasonable amount of time in order to see quality results—results that last.

I wrote this book for women who want not just to be thin, but who want to have hard, sexy bodies. I wrote this book because it works, and I can't stand to know a secret that can help others without telling them about it. And most important, I wrote this book to help you get into shape, once and for all, so that you can free your mind for the other, more important issues in life.


The loss of about five pounds of fat (not water or muscle) in approximately twenty-four days

The replacement of fat with small, shapely muscles

A firm, sensuous, well-proportioned body

Permanently increased metabolism so you can eat more without getting fat

A healthier outlook on food and eating—and a specific diet plan

Lifetime maintenance in the shape you want to be in

A healthier heart and greater lung capacity

More energy

Improved posture

Increased self-confidence


When working out in the gym, I often noticed champion bodybuilders using giant sets, the training method described in this book. Only, at the time I didn't know why. After years of interviewing bodybuilders for articles on health and fitness magazines, I discovered that they had one reason and one reason alone for using this method. That reason was to burn fat while making their muscles harder at the same time.

"Now, isn't this the goal of every woman," I thought, "to get rid of fat and to tighten and tone her body?" But because of my busy schedule, I did nothing about my discovery at the time… until I got myself in trouble one winter by gaining ten pounds and then was asked to do an unexpected photo shoot in just three and a half weeks. Motivated to try a new plan of action, I put together a workout based upon the giant set, which I'll describe in a moment. Only I modified it according to my needs. I created my own version of the technique, using much lighter weights and exercises more appropriate to a woman's goals. Amazingly, I got rid of five pounds of fat in twenty-four days. I also lost three pounds of water. (The body gives up a pound to a pound and a half of fat per week, not much more, so I assume the rest was water. It certainly wasn't muscle. I had gained muscle.) I was able to live with the remaining two extra pounds because of the great shape I was in, although after another two weeks of following this plan, I lost them, too!

After that, I enlisted countless women in my experiment and found that a program of modified giant sets is the most effective method I've ever seen to get rid of fat and tighten and tone the body in record time. It is intense, but it works fast, and the results last.


The most common methods of getting rid of fat are not efficient. Starvation diets—those that require you to consume less than 1,000 calories per day—help you to lose weight, but much of what you lose will be water, some of it will be muscle, and only a little bit of it will be fat. The problem with these diets is that you end up flabby anyway, and you're still ashamed of your body in a bathing suit or in the nude. And what's worse, you quickly gain the weight back. The body is a survival system, and after you have starved it, it waits for the moment you are off guard and then compels you to eat and eat and eat—until it has a reserve of fat stored up for the next time it's threatened with starvation.

So the starvation diet system is a vicious circle. It works only for a week or two—you'll be very temporarily thinner. Then you'll gain the weight back—and you'll end up fatter than you were in the first place. That's because when you starve yourself, you lose one pound of muscle for every three pounds of fat you lose. When you gain the weight back, it all comes back as fat. The only way to gain muscle is to work for it—as described in this program, for example.

In addition, starvation diets cause your overall metabolism to slow down, so that once you stop dieting, you end up gaining weight even if you don't overeat.

The other most commonly used method of getting rid of fat is aerobic activity such as running, bicycling, rope-jumping, and aerobic dancing. While these things do help to burn quite a bit of fat, that's basically all they do. They don't reshape your sagging body parts. They don't give you a flat stomach, perfectly shaped thighs, firm buttocks, an uplifted chest, shapely arms, and so on. Aerobic activities in and of themselves can do just so much for you. They can help to keep your heart and lungs healthy, and they can help you to burn some overall body fat, but to really shape up takes something more.


What you need is a program that can burn fat and at the same time tighten, tone, and shape muscles. What you need is The Fat-Burning Workout The workout in chapters 6 and 7, coupled with the eating plan in chapter 8, will get you to your goal in a matter of weeks. This program is designed for women who mean business. It's a one-shot exercise plan that burns the maximum of fat while at the same time it sculpts petite muscles on nine parts of the body: your biceps, chest, shoulders, triceps, back, thighs, buttocks, abdominals, and calves. What you end up with is not only a lean, shapely body, but one that is well proportioned and esthetically appealing—a body that is composed of lean tissue rather than fat—a body that can now consume more calories than before without gaining weight.

Why build muscle? Because muscle is the only body material that is active rather than passive. Muscles burn calories merely by existing. Fat just lies there on your body, stagnant. The more muscle tissue you have on your body, the faster your body burns calories.

Simply put, when you increase the amount of muscle you have, your resting metabolic rate goes up. So where you used to burn, say, 80 calories an hour just sitting in a chair thinking, you now burn between 100 and 120 calories per hour doing the same thing. The same higher rate of calorie burning follows you through the day and night, so that no matter what you are doing, whether walking, running, talking, or even sleeping, you are burning more calories than you would if your body were composed of less muscle and more fat. Once you have increased the muscle tissue on your body and reduced the fat, you can eat more than you used to eat—without getting fat. Have you noticed that men seem to be able to eat so much more than women without getting fat? That's because on the average men have a much greater muscle mass than do women. And women, on average, have a higher proportion of fat.


As a woman, the last thing you want to do is put big, bulky muscles on your body. Chances are you've seen female bodybuilders in magazines or on television and thought to yourself, "Who wants to look like that?"

You can put your mind at ease. The kind of muscles you will build with the Fat-Burning Workout are small, firm, well-defined muscles—the sensuous, shapely kind, not the masculine, bulky kind.

In fact, there's a built-in guarantee in this program that you won't get big muscles, because you will be exercising with very light weights. I am friends with many champion female bodybuilders, and I know what they must do in order to get those large muscles: They have to spend at least twelve hours a week working out with very heavy weights—up to 250 pounds for some body parts. So don't worry. If you follow this program, it can't happen to you.


Most fitness experts have long considered it impossible to burn fat aerobically and build firm and shapely muscles at the same time. But bodybuilders have known the secret to achieving these goals simultaneously for years: the giant set. They use it just before contests, when they want to perfect the quality of their muscles without adding any significant size. The giant set entails exercising a muscle intensely. The exerciser does one set each of three different exercises for a body part without resting. Bodybuilders use rather heavy weights, even with this grueling routine.

The Fat-Burning Workout modifies the giant set to use lighter weights so you can work even faster. Working fast allows you to burn the maximum amount of fat by maintaining a heart rate of at least 70 percent of your capacity for twenty minutes or more. And using lighter weights ensures that you build only small, shapely muscles. The body will only build large muscles if you force it to do so by making it lift heavier and heavier weights.

Weight training has traditionally been considered an anaerobic activity, an activity that cannot be supported by the body's natural oxygen supply, so that frequent rest periods are needed. When you lift heavy weights, your body depends upon quick bursts of energy and significant rests. The rests are necessary to replenish the body's oxygen. Although the Fat-Burning Workout uses weights, it is an aerobic activity. Because the weights used are so light, you can work at a steady pace and use your body's natural, steady flow of oxygen. You do not have to take lengthy rests to replenish your supply.


What then is the difference between the Fat-Burning Workout and other weight training programs, including programs laid out in my other books, Now or Never, Perfect Parts, and Hard Bodies?

In regular weight training programs the individual performs three to five exercises per body part—just as in this program. But there is a big difference with the Fat-Burning Workout: rest times.

In a regular workout system—like the one in Now or Never, for example—one performs the first chest exercise, the bench press, by doing the first set of fifteen repetitions, resting for thirty seconds, doing ten repetitions, resting for thirty seconds, and then doing a final set of eight repetitions and resting for another thirty seconds before proceeding to the next chest exercise. In the Fat-Burning Workout giant set, the individual does the first set of all three to five chest exercises (depending on the plan chosen) without resting. Then—and only then—is a rest allowed, but it is a short rest of only ten to fifteen seconds. The individual then does the second set of all three to five exercises, takes another short rest, and finally, completes the last set.


It sounds much like circuit training, but it isn't. Circuit training requires that you do one exercise per body part for about a minute before moving on to the next body part. However, the Fat-Burning Workout, like champion bodybuilders, uses the principle of muscle isolation. It demands that you do at least three exercises for one body part before moving on to the next body part.

As any professional bodybuilder will tell you, circuit training can never significantly reshape body parts. Why? It does not ask you to do enough exercises for each body part in sequence to make a difference. For example, in circuit training, you are asked to do one exercise for, say, your chest, and then you must move to an exercise for another body part, say your shoulders, and then to another and so on. While some fat is burned in this manner, little is accomplished in the area of muscle shaping. The people who invented circuit training were not champion bodybuilders. They were manufacturers of gym machinery, and their goal was to sell more gym equipment.

Don't misunderstand. I'm not saying that circuit training is useless. It has its purpose. You can use it to burn some calories, to get quick total-body stimulation, and to help condition your heart and lungs. But if you're hoping that circuit training will reshape your body, you're in for a big disappointment, as those of you who have tried it already know.

The full Fat-Burning Workout technique is simple to understand and fully spelled out in chapter 5. For now, keep in mind that this workout is much more intense than a regular body-building workout—but it is easier to do because you are lifting much lighter weights. Also, because of its intensity, you work faster, so you get finished faster.

In regular weight training systems such as described in Now or Never, Hard Bodies, and Perfect Parts, you are expected to go as heavy as you can for each set. (You might use fifteen-pound dumbbells for your first bench press set, twenty for your second set, and twenty-five for your third.) As a result, you build muscle mass—more than some women like. The Fat-Burning Workout requires no such thing. In fact, you are not allowed to go heavy at all. You must use sets of three-, five-, and ten-pound dumbbells (or slightly heavier weights if you have already been lifting weights for a while). The end result: you burn fat due to the steady pace and speed, and your entire body is firmed and attractively shaped because the exercises resculpt the muscles in each of your nine body parts.


My 12-Minute Total-Body Workout requires that the individual substitute weight for self-imposed pressure—"dynamic tension" and isometric pressure. The person works for twelve minutes using only three-pound dumbbells and, by the end of the week, has exercised the entire body twice and the buttocks and abdominals three times. The workout is very intense and tightens and tones the muscles. However, while this workout does in and of itself help the exerciser to exerciser to burn quite a bit of fat, in order to obtain an aerobic workout, those following the workout must do an additional twenty minutes of aerobic activity.

In the Fat-Burning Workout, extra aerobics are suggested for those who wish to speed up their progress or burn additional fat, or for those who enjoy aerobic activities. However, they are not required, because the Fat-Burning Workout is in and of itself an aerobic exercise, in addition to being a body-shaping activity.


No sport can help to reshape one's entire body into near perfect symmetry. If anything, a sport can only affect the body parts that are directly involved with that sport. For example, tennis, paddleball, and racquetball players have lovely, muscular forearms. Gymnasts, swimmers, and judo experts have highly developed backs and shoulders. Soccer players, ballet dancers, and horseback riders have gorgeous legs. And so on.

It is foolish to depend upon your sport to reshape your body. At its best, your sport can help to test your strength, flexibility, endurance, and skill and can assist you in burning some calories. It can also put you in a great mood. Because these are significant benefits, I recommend that you continue to participate in your favorite sport, but do that in addition to this workout.


The regular Fat-Burning Workout requires only three to five weekly sessions of twenty minutes each. Can you spare that much time? I'm sure you can. Give up just one telephone conversation and you'll have your twenty minutes. Or you can relinquish reading the paper. There are so many places you can find twenty minutes to spare in those three to five days in your week.

If you want to get in shape even faster, you may choose the Intensity Fat-Burning Program. This program takes thirty minutes, three to five times a week. If you really want to go wild, you can choose the Insanity Fat-Burning Program and invest forty minutes three to five times a week. It's your choice. But no matter which program you choose, you will see significant results in twenty-four days, and you will probably get to your goal in less than six weeks, depending upon the shape you are in now. (See chapter 2 for details.)


If you are fifty pounds overweight, I'll get you into shape in six months. If you are a hundred pounds overweight, I'll get you in shape in a year. Too long? Not really. Six months… twelve months. They pass quickly in any event. And when they're over you will either be in the same shape, worse shape, or better shape.

Why not make it better shape? Why not give this program a try? And I'll tell you what. I won't abandon you either. You can write to me as you go along, and if you enclose a stamped, self-addressed envelope, I promise to answer you and to help you along.


You want to get rid of the fat now. You wish there were a short-cut—one that would get you to your goal in a matter of days or even hours. Well, while I can't promise you such miracles as that, I can promise you that if you follow this program rigorously, you will see significant results in three weeks, and if you are from ten to fifteen pounds overweight, you'll lose those excess pounds in about six weeks.

The exact rate of your progress will depend upon two things: your present condition and the amount of time you're willing to invest in the program. First, let's talk about your present condition.


Right now I weigh one hundred and twenty-three pounds. I'm exactly five feet tall, and I'm in great shape. I'm a little heavier than I like to be for photo shoots and television shows (my ideal weight is 115) but I still look good in a bikini. I do have some extra body fat, but put me next to a woman my height and the same weight who doesn't work out and she will look like a blimp next to me. Why?

She will have a lot more fat on her body than I do. My weight is muscle weight, not fat weight. Muscle is condensed material, so it weighs more than fat but takes up less space.

Think of it this way: Inch for inch, muscle weighs more than fat. Muscle is to fat as lead is to feathers. An inch of lead weighs more than an inch of feathers, right? A feather-filled pillow looks fatter than a square inch of lead, but it may weigh the same. Get the picture?

Of course, the above example is somewhat exaggerated. Muscle really weighs only about two and a half times as much as fat does. But the point is clear. The scale is not always the best gauge to use when trying to get in shape—especially if your goal is to gain muscle tone and to get rid of the enemy—fat.


Chances are, if you think you're fat you are. Even if you're not overweight you can be fat. There are two kinds of fat—fat fat and skinny fat. Fat fat is overweight and fat. If you are fat fat, you can clearly see a roll of lard on your lower belly, lumps of fat on your hips, and rows of bunched up fat (commonly called cellulite) on your thighs. You will also notice that your buttocks seem to have taken over a larger proportion of your body, invading the area of your lower back and thighs.


On Sale
Nov 29, 2009
Page Count
224 pages