It’s among the top five questions I am repeatedly asked by clients. If I had a nickel for every time I heard it I’d be writing this blog while chillaxin’ in my private jet, piloted by John Travolta himself, on my way to a weekend shopping extravaganza in Milan.
“How can I lose my belly?” “What can I do to get rid of my spare tire?” “What lower ab exercises will shrink my gut?” I know my answer never makes me popular but it’s the only honest one I can offer. You simply cannot spot reduce! In order to get rid of the flab on your midsection, you must follow a balanced, consistent and intelligent program of proper nutrition, calorie control and EXERCISE! I see you rolling your eyes and before you ask….there are no magic ‘muffin top’ pills, no fancy ab roller gadgets and no ‘break through metabolism stimulating, hormone regulating, fat melting, super power foods’ that are going to do it effortlessly for you. Enjoying the luxury of a flat midsection is earned through regular cardiovascular and strength training workouts coupled with a diet rich in nutrients designed to meet and not exceed daily caloric requirements. Bottom line.
Excess abdominal fat is an issue for both men and women and frustrating as it may be, there is a reason for it. Our bodies are designed to store fat as a survival mechanism, in order to keep us warm and our organs protected. From a bio-mechanics view, the abdomen is the most efficient place to store it, as it requires less energy to pack around in this location. In order to shed your spare tire you essentially have to out smart Mother nature through a sensible diet and regular workouts. Let’s face it, you don’t need to store that gut in order to prepare for cold winters or do all that hunter, gatherer stuff anymore.
For women specifically, the good old ‘muffin top’ serves a pro creative purpose. A large round belly, along with soft curvaceous hips and thick thighs used to drive the cavemen wild as it signified good reproductive health and prime fertile ground. These days the preference is usually (not always) a slightly leaner, more toned silhouette with a hint of washboard abs. Once again, in order to achieve that fit, firm look you’ll have to combine proper diet and fat burning workouts. I know…I sound like a broken record again.
I know many people assume that doing endless crunches and using ab roller gadgets will be the answer to getting rid of the flab on their tummies but that simply isn’t rue. While ab workouts are certainly effective at building and toning abdominal muscles and improving core strength, you still will not see them if you don’t dissolve the layer/s of fat on top. You can do sit ups until the proverbial cows come home but that alone will not earn you a six pack. This is where a sensible diet and regular cardiovascular exercise comes in.
In short, your body will decide for you where it will let go of fat first and in what order. That you cannot change. You can however, encourage abdominal fat to burn away by dialing in your diet, picking up some weights and hopping on the treadmill consistently. Remember that healthy, long lasting fat loss takes hard work and patience! If that last 10 pounds is hanging on specifically at the mid-line of your body there really isn’t much you can do to change that besides tightening the belt (pun intended) on your nutrition and amping up the intensity of your workouts.Found this post useful and want more? Subscribe to our Blog feed
About TravisTravis Steffen is a Master Trainer and founder of WorkoutBOX. After years of experience training professional athletes and thousands of others just like you, he knows exactly what it takes to get you in serious shape. Follow his expert guidance and you're guaranteed to get amazing results.Want to hear even more of what Travis has to say? Keep in touch with him on Facebook and Twitter!
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