Spice Things Up
That beyond-hot mustard that comes with Asian takeout can rev your metabolism by 20 to 25 percent.
"It boosts production of fat-burning hormones," says Lori Shemek, PhD, author of Fire-Up Your Fat Burn! Try adding one teaspoon to your usual vinaigrette.
Cyclists who pedaled at an all-out effort with high resistance for a total of five 30-second sprints (that's just 2.5 minutes!) burned a whopping 200 calories, according to recent Colorado State University research.
Don't forget to recover between intervals: Here participants recouped with four minutes of slow pedaling with low resistance after each burst.
"Changing the intensity forces your muscles to work harder," says Andia Winslow, a personal trainer in New York City.
It will keep your metab humming when you're just bumming around. In a University of Utah study, participants who downed eight to 12 glasses of water a day burned more calories at rest than those who drank four.
Water not your cup of tea? Freeze bits of peeled citrus fruit and use them in place of ice cubes. You can boost your water intake even more by eating these 15 foods that help you stay hydrated.
Exercisers who drank a 250-calorie shake with 24 grams of protein and 36 grams of carbs after strength training lost about four pounds more fat and created one and a half pounds more lean muscle in six months than those who didn't drink the shake, Westcott says.
His research links the protein-carb hit with muscle building and fat loss. But it doesn't have to be a shake; a banana with peanut butter works too—just nosh within 30 minutes after working out (and include those calories in your overall tally).
Do a Down Dog
Surprise: Yoga gets you in burn mode. In one study, participants who om'd their way through a 50-minute yoga session saw a drop in their levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which can inhibit fat burning.
Start with a 10-minute yoga circuit and work up to a longer session.
"Working out hard for 40 minutes can make your body burn more calories at a higher rate for nearly a full day afterwards," says Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD. She recommends this intense, calorie-torching workout to instantly boost your metabolism.
More: 15-Minute Core Workout
Stay in shape in a fitness class.