Fat Burning Furnace Review (and a Couple of Fat Burning Furnace Complaints)

This is one of those Fat Burning Furnace Reviews that’s based on actual use of the program. I’m mostly happy, but also have some Fat Burning Furnace complaints. I hope the write-up is useful to you and that it anticipates some of your questions.
 - Rob

[The ads are cheesy but cute]
Score Card:
  (scores explained…)
Workout B-
Usability B-
Diet B
Author: Rob Poulos
What I like:

  • Low impact. Muscle building.
  • Good diet advice.
  • Lots of diet tips and tricks.
  • Somewhat prescriptive.
  • Done in 20-30 minutes.
What you might not like:

  • Less athletic than other programs.
  • Requires standard weight training machines.
Quick Links:

Quick Links

People seem to click these links most often:

Does Fat Burning Furnace Work?

A while ago I started seeing these cartoonish “Fat Burning Furnace” ads all over the web. Clicking through, it seemed over-hyped to me, so I was skeptical. Then one day I was talking to one of my really fit friends about running (what kind of shoes we like, where we like to run, that sort of thing). I asked him what else he does to stay in shape, and he said:

“I hate spending a lot of time working out. Let me show you the book I use.”

Then he flipped open his laptop and showed me “the book”, which turned out to be the “Fat Burning Furnace”, written by Rob Poulos. I was surprised, but considering the great shape my friend was in, I figured I had to try it out.  In a nutshell, this is a great program that delivers results that both look and feel great.  It’s very different from the workouts most people do, and I guess that’s the point.  It’s very effective, easy to follow and delivers great results without taking a huge chunk of time out of your day. There’s a lot to like about that. So does Fat Burning Furnace really work? Yes, it does.

What is the Fat Burning Furnace?

The “furnace” is your body, and the program tells you what you need to do to light that furnace to make it better at burning fat, while also becoming stronger, healthier and more energetic.  It tells you exactly what you need to do to shed excess fat and build the sort of toned attractive figure that most people who workout want to achieve.  Both women and men will develop toned, firm, slim figures. Men will also put on solid, visible muscle in the areas they care about (yes, you’ll like the results). As well as exercise, the program incorporates an easy-to-follow nutrition program, and a number of additional habits and tips that will help you succeed.  Based on what I’ve personally seen and experienced, I’m inclined to believe the testimonials here and here

How does Fat Burning Furnace work?

The core of the program is high-intensity weight training.  If this idea turns you off, stick with me while I explain what I mean. This isn’t the sort of boring repetitive weight training you’re used to seeing in the gym or fitness magazines.  It thoroughly works out your full body in short intense sessions, with very short breaks, and no repetitions. This has two fat-burning benefits.

  1. Firstly, regular high-intensity training continuously pushes your body to adapt and make changes, raising your resting metabolic rate (RMR) for 24-48 hours after each workout as your body recovers and makes improvements.  This sort of workout only takes 20 minutes, but continues burning calories for the next couple of days.
  2. Secondly, these exercises promote lean muscle development, and as we all know, a pound of muscle burns more energy than fat even when you’re at rest.  In other words, by developing muscle, you’re permanently raising your RMR, and creating a permanent fat-burning effect.

Combine these two effects and  you’re creating a 24-by-7 ongoing energy need that your body will satisfy by consuming the energy stored in your fat cells.

This approach is very much aligned with the way I like to workout, and it’s way more effective than spending an hour or two on the treadmill or in the weight room.  Traditional long steady cardio burns some energy while you do it, but you’re also training your body to optimize and burn less energy, as well as training it to keep energy in reserve. What’s more, it only burns energy while you’re on the treadmill.  Your RMR is unchanged.   The difference in total calories burned is huge. Similarly, long weightlifting sessions will, if done right, make you considerably stronger, but you’re missing out on 24-48 hours of raised metabolism that high-intensity causes.

Should you worry about developing too much muscle?

Nah.  Don’t get me wrong – you will put on muscle.  Women will get toned (your friends will be jealous and you’ll enjoy the compliments).  Men will get biceps and shoulders to brag about.  But you won’t look like bulky body-builders.  To get really bulky, not only do you need to be genetically and hormonally biased to put on a lot of muscle, and you also need a completely different training program that takes a lot more time, using different training techniques, diet plans and workout schedules to the ones presented in this book (as well as special supplements).   With Fat Burning Furnace, you won’t look chunky – you’ll look lean, athletic and attractive.

How to get the most out of the program

This isn’t some quick-and-dirty e-book somebody whipped up in a week.  There’s over 150 pages of real content, thoughtfully explained and laid out in a logical order, and it’s worth reading.  Resist the temptation to skip straight to the workout charts and head to the gym, or you’ll miss out on 90% of the information that’s going to make you succeed.  Set aside a few hours to read through it, and don’t gloss over the details.  The details make a huge difference to the results, and seriously, if you’re going to invest your time, sweat and energy in a workout program you do want to maximize the results, right?  It’s actually one of the great things about this program – the fact that it doesn’t just present the exercises, but takes the time to make sure you know about the little details that make all the difference.  When I first read it, I set aside a Saturday morning in my favorite armchair with the book, a notepad, and my iPod, and read it from cover to cover, making notes as I went.  It was time really well spent.

The other thing to bear in mind is that it’s more than just an e-book.  It comes with a step-by-step guide (the “Fat Burning Blueprint”), which eliminates any confusion – just do what the blueprint says. And it also includes email coaching to help get you up and going and successfully through the first few months.

The author, Rob Poulos, is a big fan of selectable dumbbells.I agree: they save space and enable you to do tons of different exercises.

What equipment do you need?

In addition to a bench and dumbbells, you’ll need access to machines to do pull-downs, pull-overs, leg extensions and leg curls (the book also recommends a pec-deck, power-rack and barbell, and if you can get access to those too, then great – but they’re not essential).  Fortunately, these aren’t fancy machines, so your best options are to either get a simple home-gym machine, or find a no-frills gym near where you work or live. Avoid the fancy gyms with expensive memberships – they’ll charge you for a pile of stuff you’ll never use.  The local community center or YMCA probably has what you need.  And yes, you can do the program without any machines, but you’ll need to figure out how to substitute equivalent dumbbell and bodyweight routines.  If you go this route, I suggest you at least get dumbbells, a bench, a pull-up bar (this is mine) and some resistance bands.

How much time does it take each day?

If you’ve read any of my other posts, you’ll know I’m not a fan of spending hours in the gym.  You’ll need to set aside 20-30 minutes around 3 times per week.  You won’t need extra time to warm up or cool down.  Just put on your workout gear, do the 20-30 minute workout, and hit the shower.  This amount of time spent on a high-intensity full body workout is easily enough to generate great results. Believe me, you’ll feel it. Besides, any more would be detrimental, preventing your body from recovering properly, and slowing or halting your progress. Personally, I have plenty of other things to do with my time (and I’m sure you do too).  So the modest time-requirement is ideal.

How long is the program?

Fat Burning Furnace is laid out  in stages:

  • Beginner’s “Break In” routine (2 weeks).
  • Beginner’s routine (12 weeks).
  • Intermediate routine (12 weeks).
  • Advanced routine (12 weeks).

The 2-week break-in routine is for anybody who’s never done strength training before, or hasn’t done it in the last six months and will get you ready for the 12-week beginner’s routine, which is where you’ll really light your fat-burner.  Take a week off at the end of each 12-week routine, and depending on your progress, repeat or move on to the next routine until you reach the advanced level.  That’s a total of 38 weeks, with lots of built-in flexibility, and you can keep doing it indefinitely.

The program also comes with an optional high-intensity interval sprint routine that you can work into the intermediate and advanced stages. Since I like running, this is a great option for me.  If you don’t like running (or it’s raining outside) you can substitute any another cardio, such as stationary bike, and still get a lot of the benefit.  Of course, when you’re travelling, you won’t always have access to the equipment you need, so there’s also a bodyweight routine, which has the added benefit of providing you with more options for variety and substitution if you want to mix things up a bit in your regular routine.

What about the diet?

I like the dietary advice in this book.  It emphasizes nutrition rather than calories or supplements, and is basically about eating healthy.  You don’t need to eat anything weird, starve yourself, or use a stopwatch and scales.   The guidance is really easy to follow.  Eat more smaller meals rather than three big meals.  Drink lots of water.  Eat high-fiber whole-grain carbs.  Lots of green veggies and a variety of fruit.  A reasonable amount of protein (but don’t go overboard), from both animal and plant sources (e.g. legumes).  Avoid junk calories (sweets, alcohol, etc) except on occasions and then in moderation.  Like I said, the principles are pretty simple and sensible.  The book goes into this in more detail and has a chart that lists dozens of recommended foods, with a sample daily meal plan to help you apply it.

What are my Fat Burning Furnace complaints?

This is the least “athletic” of the workouts on this site. By this I mean that while it still emphasizes intensity, it relies more on machines and isolated moves. Fat Burning Furnace will work your full body, building lean muscle and elevating your metabolism, and I experienced good results from it.  But the individual exercises don’t involve as much agility, or move the weight over longer distances  in compound movements.

Does this matter?  Well, partly.  It depends on your goals.  If you want explosive strength and endurance, you’re more likely to get it from programs that involve more energetic free-weight compound movements (this happens to be what I enjoy, and my favorite is still Max Workouts).  If you want something lower impact that focuses more on strength training, Fat Burning Furnace is probably a better choice.  In the end, it’s all about what works best for you, since that’s what you’re more likely to enjoy and stick to in the long run.

The Bottom Line?

Initially I ignored this program because the ads were overly hyped.  But the reality is this is a good fitness and fat-loss program, that’s easy to follow, and that delivers real results you can see and feel.

More Information

  • FAQ Page – Frequently asked questions.
  • Free e-Book – contains useful fat burning advice, a body fat percentage calculator, and a newsletter.
  • Skip the Ads – you can skip most (not all) of the sales pitch and go straight to the order page to see what the bottom line is.
  • Presentation – that explains why it’s hard to lose fat, and outlines some of the principles of the program.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments below or send me a message directly.

- Rob

PS. And, just for good measure, here’s one more of those cartoony ads :-)

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