When an obese person starts working out with barbells, something magical happens: dramatic weight loss and a change in body shape. And isn’t that what you want?

I’m a former certified personal trainer who’s been working out all over the place for years, and the irony is that I have rarely witnessed obese people exercising with barbells, especially women.

There are several barbell routines that are excellent for obese men as well as women.

Several such routines stand out for burning fat, improving fitness and strength, improving mobility and reshaping the body.

Barbell routines for obese people are no more dangerous than they are for smaller people.

The first barbell routine for obese men and women (as well as smaller) is the squat. This is such a great exercise.

Squat. Shutterstock/Reshetnikov_art

The squat can be done by first using an unloaded bar (45 pounds) until you get your form down pat.

The squat works the entire legs, butt and hips, but also the lower back.

As a result, king calories are burned, not to mention improvement in neuromuscular coordination.

Next on the list is the deadlift. The great thing about this exercise is that it works the entire body, and the motion can carry over to everyday activities. Start out using just a standard 45-pound Olympic bar.

Deadlift. Shutterstock/Reshetnikov_art

Or, you can use lighter barbells; most gyms have “ready made” barbells beginning at 20 pounds.

Deadlifts require acute attention to proper form, to avoid injury. You will NOT get bigger doing deadlifts just because the photo above shows a very large woman doing deadlifts.

No barbell routine is complete without the flat bench press, though keep in mind that one’s belly girth can cut the range of motion short, as far as the barbell  lowering and being pushed back up again.

Bench press

However, presses with dumbbells would solve this problem. Furthermore, a barbell press at an incline would allow greater range of motion, but on the other hand, these don’t engage as much of the chest as does the flat bench press.

Beginners will of course find the flat bench press challenging at first, but as they become more conditioned, they’ll want to get a greater range of motion and should include other chest press routines.

The three routines in this article are a great start for obese men and women.

Lorra Garrick is a former personal trainer certified through the American Council on Exercise. At Bally Total Fitness she trained women and men of all ages for fat loss, muscle building, fitness and improved health. 



Top image: New Africa