Your Workouts Aren’t Hard Enough
Exercise is not required for fat loss, but it can certainly help! The good news is that any exercise can help get rid of belly fat since fat loss boils down to eating fewer calories than you burn. However, certain styles of exercise like strength training and HIIT may offer additional advantages.
The Fix: Exercises That Get Rid of Belly Fat
A long jog or spin on the elliptical may no longer cut it. While you may be burning calories with a moderate workout regime, the key to increased fat burning is to increase calorie burn even after your done in the gym – by building lean mass or increasing your VO2 max. Muscle is more metabolic, meaning it helps you burn more calories at rest, and the more muscle you have, the better you store carbs and utilize them for energy.
VO2 max is the measurement of how efficiently your body can access fat stores for energy and oxygen during intense workouts. And increasing your VO2 max, will increase the amount of fat you are able to burn.
High-Intensity Interval Training – HIIT
HIIT workouts may promote fat loss and improve stamina faster than endurance training alone . HIIT not only helps you maximize fat burning throughout the day but can also whip you into shape super fast – since most workouts are short and burn a ton of calories.
Psst… the Trifecta app has a pretty sick workout timer too! And daily workouts to try.
Include High Intensity Exercise
One way to help decrease overall body fat is to try out a high-intensity exercise like the well-known high-intensity interval training several times a week.
This type of training alternates from intense bursts of movement to lower intensity or rest periods, thus the intervals.
The point is to get your heart rate up during those bursts.
Because youll be burning a lot of calories in the form of energy, youll see lower abdomen flatten and overall body fat percentage goes down as well.
Good examples of HIIT workouts:
- Squat jumps
- Medicine ball slam
Keep in mind that high intensity during workouts can be dangerous, consult with your doctor first before starting this type of fitness routine.
Okay Now You Can Do Some Crunches
Although you cant spot reduce fat, you can target building lean muscle tissue, which in turn helps burn fat. There are literally dozens of muscles between your shoulders and your hips that are involved in every movement you do, says DiVecchio. The fastest way to create a lean midsection begins with choosing the right moves.
Aim to do ab work three or four times a week on non-consecutive days with at least 24 hours of rest in between sessions, says Gagliardi. During those sessions, you can start with simpler moves like crunches, bicycle crunches, and planks. Even though you may only be directly targeting your abs three or four times a week, you should still be activating your core in every workout you do, says Gagliardi.
There are tons of different ab workouts you can do right in your home. Once youre comfortable in an ab routine, work your way up to more complex ab exercises, like side-to-side med ball slams and weighted Russian twists, says DiVecchio.
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So No There’s Not But Here’s What You Can Do
1. Start simple
Typically there are many things you may need to improve to lose belly fat. But start by focusing on changing or improving just one thing. Then, once you conquer that first objective, you can move on to the next thing, and so on.
2. Target sugar
One good place to begin improving your food choices is to eliminate sugary drinks and not just soda, but juices. Sugar increases belly fat and fiber reduces belly fat thus when you’re juicing fruits, you’re removing the fiber, leaving pure sugar. So one quick fix, a very concrete fix, would be eliminating sugary drinks.
Replacing sugary beverages with water will help dramatically cut down your sugar intake, and then once you’ve taken that step, you can figure out how to cut down on foods that are high in sugar.
If you have a sweet tooth and need to put that final accent to your meal, eat an apple, melon or fresh berries. Just remember, fruit is not a substitute for vegetables.
3. Go Mediterranean
The popular “flat belly diets”embrace much of the wisdom found in eating a Mediterranean diet, which helps everything from brain health to hearth health. The basic premise for both diets is eat foods rich in monosaturated fatty acids that may help reduce your belly fat storage. MUFA-rich foods include olive oil, nuts and seeds, avocodos, and fish. Eating yogurt regularly has also been found to be helpful in reducing belly fat.
4. Front-load your meal
5. Commit to a physical lifestyle
Can Targeted Exercises Get Rid Of Your Lower Belly Fat
Most trainers out there will be quick to tell you spot reduction a.k.a. targeted exercises are a total myth.
The truth is you can tone the area and encourage fat loss to it with the right kind of exercise.
A study by the American Journal Of Physiology Endocrinology and Metabolism found the breakdown of fat tissue is greatest next to working muscles.
The problem is that this fat loss was very small.
The best thing you can do to target your belly fat with exercise is to combine High-Intensity Interval Training workouts and specifically targeted exercises for your abs.
For my list of the 10 best lower ab exercises check out my other blog post.
Hormonal issues could also be causing you to store and keep that stubborn lower belly fat.
Cortisol promotes belly fat storage making it near impossible to lose. Being able to reduce these belly fat storing hormones will be critical to getting rid of it.
The hunger hormone ghrelin will make you want to eat more by increasing your appetite.
Well get into how to optimize your hormones to target lose your lower belly fat later.
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Stop Drinking Sugary Drinks
If there’s a hierarchy of sugary goods, then sugary drugs would sit even higher than sugary foods. However, even a small change to your habits here can make a big difference. That was proved in a study by researchers at Virginia Tech, which looked at the benefits of replacing just one sugary drink with water.
“We found that among US adults who consume one serving of sugar-sweetened beverages per day, replacing that drink with water lowered the percent of calories coming from drinks from 17 to 11%,” said study author Kiyah J. Duffey. “Even those who consumed more sugary drinks per day could still benefit from water replacement, dropping the amount of calories coming from beverages to less than 25% of their daily caloric intake.”
Cardio Workouts To Lose Belly Fat
- This 28-day plan by Alice Liveing will teach you the basics of strength training, helping you to build lean muscle with foundation moves.
- Or, this four-week Kayla Itsines workout plan incorporates HIIT to burn fat and tone muscle.
- PT Gauri Chopra’s four week HIIT plan will help to burn fat efficiently and increase your stamina and muscular endurance.
‘The key to continually improving and losing belly fat is to scale up your workouts every week. Incrementally increase the intensity and load of your workouts, and you will soon see improvements to your fitness,’ says Hughes.
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How To Tighten Stomach Muscles After 60
Strong abs are important for people of all ages, but especially for seniors. As the center of the body, the core helps stabilize the body to enhance balance, mobility and functionality. As musculature declines with age, weakened abdominal muscles can make daily tasks of living harder and can increase your risk of falling, according to a 2014 study in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity. Getting active and performing abdominal-strengthening exercises a few times a week will help you look, feel and function better in your 60s and beyond.
And Maybe Cut Your Carbs Too
You dont have to go low carb to lose body fat and lower belly fat. But breaking up with bread might help you reach your goal a little faster.
In a 2014 study, participants who ate a low carb diet lost more weight than those who ate a low fat diet. Bazzano LA. . Effects of low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets. Going low carb also seems to help people lose more fat while preserving calorie-torching lean muscle tissue.
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Exercise And Strengthtraining: A One
Exercises that increase the heart rate and make you sweat help you lose weight in general both visceral fat and the subcutaneous fat under the skin. Aerobic exercise burns overall calories and helps you reduce total body fat.
Dr. Butsch says the key to losing abdominal visceral fat seems to lie in a combination approach. He suggests trying 20 minutes of whole-body strength training plus a cardio routine to strengthen muscle cells and increase fat burn.
Do What You Can To Reduce Stress Levels
“If you are working out consistently, eating healthy and still not losing the belly fat, I suggest having your hormones checked,” Tucker suggests. “Too much cortisol can be a result of adrenal fatigue and can cause weight gain and bloat around the lower belly.”
If the belly fat is the result of a hormone imbalance, you’ll also want to prioritize adding stress reduction activities into your day. “Try incorporating a daily meditation practice or yin yoga and limiting time on devices to reduce stress and calm your nervous system”.
Boutcher SH. High-intensity intermittent exercise and fat loss. J Obes. 2011 2011:868305.
Moyer AE, Rodin J, Grilo CM, Cummings N, Larson LM, Rebuffé-Scrive M. Stress-induced cortisol response and fat distribution in women. Obes Res. 1994 2:255-262.
Stanhope KL. Sugar consumption, metabolic disease and obesity: The state of the controversy. Crit Rev Clin Lab Sci. 2016 53:52-67.
Lattimer JM, Haub MD. Effects of dietary fiber and its components on metabolic health. Nutrients. 2010 2:1266-1289.
Ellulu MS, Patimah I, Khazaai H, Rahmat A, Abed Y. Obesity and inflammation: the linking mechanism and the complications. Arch Med Sci. 2017 13:851-863.
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Focus On The Way Your Clothes Fit More Than Reading A Scale
As you add muscle mass and lose fat, the reading on your bathroom scale maynot change much, but your pants will be looser. Thats a better mark ofprogress. Measured around, your waistline should be less than 35 inches ifyoure a woman or less than 40 inches if youre a man to reduce heart anddiabetes risks.
Stubborn Fat Has More Alpha Receptors
To burn fat, it must first be released from your fat cells. This is known as lipolysis.
In stubborn areas like your lower stomach, fat is released more slowly than from other areas.
This is because stubborn fat cells actually have a different type of receptor than normal fat cells: they have what are known as alpha receptors instead of beta receptors.
These receptors are what interact with hormones known as catecholamines, which are what trigger these cells to release fat however, the alpha receptors in the stubborn fat cells cause the fat to be released far more slowly than the beta receptors in the normal fat cells.
So, when you lose weight, youll typically see more initial weight loss from the fat cells with beta receptors, while the fat cells with alpha receptors will be slower to respond.
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Get Serious About Sleep
Even a minor lack of sleep can contribute to a major gain in belly fat, so if you’re eager to keep your belly slim as you age, there’s no time like the present to get serious about your sleep. Research published in the aptly-named journal Sleep reveals that people who skimped on sleep gained 32% more visceral fat over a five-year period than their well-rested counterparts. Now, who’s up for a nap?
Adding Helpful Foods To Reduce Belly Fat
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Drink Plenty Of Water
Hydration is key to weight loss. Did you know that the brain struggles to recognise the difference between being hungry and thirsty? As it turns out, thirst is often mistaken for a sugar craving so rather than heading to the cupboard and grabbing that secret chocolate bar youve got hidden at the back, try drinking a glass of water instead.
Ulla smart hydration reminder, £15.80,
You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
From scrolling through social media to having a late-night coffee, there are plenty of ways we unknowingly keep ourselves awake at night. Aside from feeling tired and groggy the next day, not getting the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep each night can affect weight loss, explains Dr Luke.
“When we’re lacking in sleep, our bodys hormones get thrown off balance which can impact our hunger levels the next day. We all have two hormones that affect our appetite: ghrelin and leptin. When we dont get enough sleep, our ghrelin levels rise, and our leptin levels drop. This means that when we’re awake, we tend to eat more but feel less satisfied. Try going to bed a little earlier than usual to avoid this imbalance and remember to remove any distractions that might prevent you from nodding off,” he continues.
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You’re Not Lifting Weights
While bodyweight resistance training is highly effective, pumping a little iron pays dividends when it comes to blasting belly fat.
A few weight training sessions a week will set you on a path for a speedier metabolism, as according to the NHS muscle burns more calories than fat, thus the more muscle you have, the more fat you torch, and the benefits continue after youve left the gym too, as resting metabolic rate improves, meaning that you burn more calories throughout the day.
The Different Types Of Belly Fat
Not all fat is created equal. Excess timber around the waist hurts your health in a way that subcutaneous fat the soft layer of chub that sits directly under the skin doesnt. Belly fat is stored in your abdominal cavity, and shares space with important organs like the liver, stomach, kidneys and intestines.
Belly fat is metabolically active, which means its basically an organ in itself but not one youd want to donate.
It excels at pumping out various inflammatory substances, interfering with hormones that regulate appetite, weight, mood and brain function and sending your cortisol levels responsible for stress through the roof. No surprise then, that its associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer.
So far, so tragic. There is, however, some good news. Belly fat may be the most dangerous type of body fat, but since its buried deep within your body, its also the easiest to get rid of. But before we talk about that, its worth identifying the causes of belly fat. After all, its far better to not put the weight on in the first place.
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Cook At Home As Much As You Can
When dining out you rarely know exactly what ingredients are included in your meals, but cooking at home brings you a lot more control over what you eat. If you’re trying to eat a healthier diet to reduce fat, cooking at home is a big help. Another great part of eating at home? You’ll most likely save a bunch of money, too.
Eat Plenty Of Soluble Fiber
Soluble fiber absorbs water and forms a gel that helps slow down food as it passes through your digestive system.
Studies show that this type of fiber promotes weight loss by helping you feel full, so you naturally eat less. It may also decrease the number of calories your body absorbs from food .
Whats more, soluble fiber may help fight belly fat.
An observational study in over 1,100 adults found that for every 10-gram increase in soluble fiber intake, belly fat gain decreased by 3.7% over a 5-year period (
Make an effort to consume high fiber foods every day. Excellent include:
- flax seeds
Soluble fiber may help you to lose weight by increasing fullness and reducing calorie absorption. Try to include plenty of high fiber foods in your weight loss diet.
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