Exercises That Can Burn 500 Calories in Under an Hour

Ben Emanuel II

What do 500 calories look like? A Big Mac is around 550 calories according to McDonald's. It is also equivalent to around 2 slices of pepperoni pizza according to the USDA.

Not everyone can go to the gym and do a workout for two straight hours. Most of us are living a busy schedule throughout the week. Between juggling 40 to 50 hours of work weekly and completing other roles at home, a lot of people struggle how they can make time for their fitness.

That’s why we’ve come up with a list of exercises that are known to help you burn 500 calories in just under an hour.

What do 500 calories look like? A Big Mac is around 550 calories according to McDonald's. It is also equivalent to around 2 slices of pepperoni pizza according to the USDA.

Jump Rope

With more people doing their workouts at home, jump ropes are now once again popular. Just how many calories can you burn in under an hour? According to experts, you can burn around 667-990 calories per hour if you do an average of 120 skips per minute.

In one study, researchers discovered that a 12-week jump rope program can lessen the risk of prehypertensive adolescents to cardiovascular conditions.

The only issue that you might want to anticipate is the fact that you will have to be well-coordinated to be able to skip rope successfully. For beginners, you want to stick with the basics. Start slow and build your momentum from there.

Climbing the Stairs

If you don't have the time to really hit the gym, then why not hit the stairs on your break time? Maintain a pace of 77 steps per minute going up the stairs and you will be able to burn around 452 to 670 calories per hour. Plus, the good thing about this workout is that you can train both legs. Unlike squats that can create muscle imbalance, climbing the stairs gets you to use each leg.

Running Uphill

Another great way to burn 500 calories in under an hour is by running uphill. Sprint for about 20 seconds and try to jog as back downhill as your rest. Uphill sprints can get you to burn 639-946 calories in an hour. Plus, not only will you be able to burn a lot of calories in the process, but you will also get to improve your VO2 max.

However, be sure that you are going to warm up before you even attempt to do this workout. Plus, you want to stretch your hamstrings and hips well after doing the workout. You will be surprised how tiring it could get.


So let's say that you still don't have the body of a sprinter. Then, what you can do is to jog. Running at a steady pace isn't bad after all. If you run a 10-minute mile pace for an hour, you will be able to burn as many as 566 to around 830 calories per hour.

If you are going to be running at a 7 out of 10 effort, it is believed by experts that you can get your body to burn calories throughout the day.


Burpees can be another tiring exercise that you can do in the comfort of your home. If you aren’t familiar with the burpees, it starts by jumping in place, and then sprawling, then doing a pushup. This exercise can burn 10 to 15 calories every minute. So that's around 600 to 900 calories in under an hour.

Though it sounds like a good plan to be doing burpees nonstop for an entire hour, you always want to make sure that you are doing it in proper form. There is a chance that your wrist could get injured or you even misstep if you are already exhausted and pushing yourself to the limit.

Mixing And Matching

The best way to make your workout interesting is to make sure that you are going to mix and match these exercises for the day. A good example is to perhaps do 3 sets of 10-minute runs before transitioning towards a 2 x 15-minute jump rope session.

Include Resistance Training

Also, it is a good idea to integrate resistance training along with the exercises that we've mentioned. Not only will this keep things interesting, but this can also help develop muscles that will burn more calories even if you're at rest.

What if you don’t have any access to a gym? That’s when kettlebells can come in handy. Kettlebells are easy to keep, not to mention you get many exercise variations to choose from. A kettlebell circuit alone can burn around 554 to 822 calories per hour. And what makes kettlebells ideal for those who are looking to burn as many calories possible in under an hour is the fact that you can target both the lower and upper body. This allows you to stretch for a longer period compared to let's say doing burpees for an entire hour.

Final Thoughts

You don’t need to spend 2 to 3 hours in a gym to be able to stay fit. Instead, you can be smart about the type of exercise/s that you do. These exercises we’ve mentioned are fairly difficult making the body burn a good amount of calories even for a short period.

How do you find the exercises that we’ve mentioned? Was there anything we’ve missed? Let us know in the comment section below!