5 Compound Exercises For Total Body Mass & Fat Loss

Exercise is an important part of any fitness routine. It helps you burn calories and makes your muscles stronger.

While many exercises improve your overall health, there are some compound movements that can help you lose weight and body fat more quickly than others. The following compound exercises are the best for burning body fat and building muscle mass:

Compound Exercises For Total Body Mass & Fat Loss

Here’s a look at five such exercises:

#1 Squat

Squats are a full body exercise. They work your legs, lower back, shoulders, and abs.

Squats are a compound exercise, as they involve multiple muscle groups working simultaneously to perform the movement. You can do squats with or without weights (barbells), but we recommend starting with bodyweight only till you get comfortable doing them correctly before adding any extra resistance.

There are many variations of this exercise you can do depending on what equipment is available to you.

The most basic squat involves standing with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart while holding weights in each hand at chest level or resting against a wall with your arms extended forward (you could also use a barbell if available).

To do the exercise, lower yourself down into a sitting position till your thighs are parallel to the floor. Pushing yourself back up again using all four limbs or just one leg at a time will increase strength throughout the lower body and improve coordination between the upper and lower body muscles.


#2 Deadlift

Deadlifts are a compound exercise that works the legs, back, and shoulders. They can be performed with a barbell, dumbbells, or kettlebells.

Here’s how you can do deadlifts:

  • Once you have set up in your decided stance (semi-sumo or conventional), grab hold of the bar, and lift it off the floor till your hips come off their starting position.
  • At this point, you will want to hold for one second before lowering under control back down to the starting position again.


#3 Pull-up

Pull-ups are a well-known compound exercise that works multiple muscles at once. The pull-up is performed by hanging from a bar, and raising yourself up till your chin has reached above the bar.

The muscle groups you will be working on in this exercise include the lats (the large muscles either side of your back), biceps, and shoulders. You should aim to complete a minimum of six reps per set, with three sets being optimal for getting the most results from this exercise. Pull-ups are a great full body compound exercise that targets the back and arms.

To do pull-ups:

  • Hang from a pull-up bar with an overhand grip.
  • Pull yourself up till your chin crosses the bar. The higher you can go, the better.
  • Try not to swing while you move up. Lower down once at the top.
  • Repeat for reps.


#4 Overhead Press

The overhead press is a great compound exercise that works the shoulders, chest, and triceps. It’s also fabulous for building muscle mass and improving posture. Like all pressing exercises, it’s great for improving overall upper body strength as well.

To do an overhead press with dumbbells:

  • Grasp dumbbells in each hand, and stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Hold the dumbbells above your head with arms straight but not locked at the elbows; keep them parallel to each other throughout the movement.
  • Lower them till they touch (or almost touch) your chest at the bottom of one rep.
  • Push back up to full extension so that you re-position yourself where you started before repeating reps for the desired number of sets or reps or time.

Some people say the seated overhead press is a shoddy and even dangerous alternative to a standing overhead press, but I disagree.In fact, I think it’s one of the best shoulder exercises you can do. I explain why (and how to do it correctly) here: legionathletics.com/seated-overhea… https://t.co/m4Y9eis0WF

#5 Bench Press

The bench press is a movement that works the chest, shoulders, triceps, and abs. It’s ideal for building mass because you can use heavy weights that stress all the muscles in your upper body.

To get started:

  • Place a barbell on the rack at shoulder level, and load it with plates. Lie down on a flat bench, with your back straight and feet firmly planted on the floor.
  • Hold the barbell in both hands at arm’s length next to your head with elbows bent beneath it.
  • Lower the bar slowly till it touches your chest; make sure not to push off with your legs for momentum
  • Pause briefly at this point before pressing up again


The aforementioned compound exercises are perfect for anyone looking to build muscle and lose fat. They will improve your overall strength and tone while also giving your body a complete workout with every repetition.

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