How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

Everyone has body fat. Ignore the fitness magazine headline of the ripped guy saying how he literally has no fat on his body.

Body Fat is necessary. It is the best fuel storage for your body as it’s providing him a lot of energy. Fat tissue is your body’s way of storing energy.

Back in our hunter and gatherer times, this was crucial. One could not buy foods as easily as we buy them today. In prehistoric times we had to go days and maybe even weeks without food. The accumulation of fat cells was crucial in that day and age.

Fat cells used to be our friends, now we like to call them our worst enemy. What used to be so beneficial in the past is now deeply annoying. But that fat storage, especially around your waist — belly fat, can not only be annoying but also be dangerously life threatening.

Not All Body Fat Is Created Equal

My grandfather used to have a really big and hard belly. He had such a huge belly that he would be able to drive his Mercedes with his tummy only. Just hilarious when you think about it.

My grandpa was not storing his body fat at the right point. In fact, the belly fat turned out to be life threatening. My grandfather suffered from lung cancer just some years later, but which he has thankfully beaten by now. He developed dangerous fat around his organs, which can be real, really dangerous.

We have to make an important difference when it comes to body fat:

Visceral Fat: the fat that is stored around your organs.

This is the fat my grandfather possessed in excess. Fat around your organs can be potentially life threatening. It reduces the blood flow to these important tissues and can impair organ function. It’s very stressful for your body. You’ve got a lot of visceral fat on your belly if it’s hard and constantly looks like the belly has swollen up. The typical beer belly is a product of fat build up around your organs.

Subcutaneous Fat: the fat that most people possess.

Instead of laying around your organs, this fat is directly under your skin. You can pinch it with your fingers. This fat is less life threatening, but it can also drastically impair your confidence, athletic ability and your self-image. Subcutaneous fat can also be found around your hips, where it is called cellulite.

Although visceral fat is the more dangerous one, both of these fat cells should be avoided to have in excess. They both can increase the fat content in your blood. As fat levels rise, the ability of your body to clear sugar from the blood drops due to insulin resistance. This can lead to type 2 diabetes in the long-term.

How I’ve Lost My Fat

I didn’t always have a sixpack. Belly fat was something that was nearly impossible to lose for me.

I remember talking with a friend that had great abs since he was born. I asked him for advice. He told me that I should find ways to cope with my current situation, as having a sixpack is purely genetical. Not the motivation I had hoped for.

Today I can tell you with confidence that he was wrong. I currently have a sixpack and am extremely proud of it. It shows me that everything is possible if you put in the work.

What needs to be done to lose your belly fat is often just a mindset shift. Most people know that they’re eating the wrong foods. You already know that daily exercise is crucial for losing your belly fat. What people often lack is the mental state and the willingness to actually put in the work.

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

Increase Your Discipline, Motivation, And Drive

How do you increase your discipline, motivation and drive? I suggest you doing three things:

1. Exercise

I don’t recommend you exercising for burning excess calories only. Yes, there is some of that, but exercise can also dramatically influence your mindset.

Physical activity gives you the feeling of control over your life. It gives you better self-awareness and control, it betters your thinking and increases your happiness. The mental state of mind that you need when you’re trying to lose your belly fat.

2. Practice Mindfulness

Meditate daily. Doesn’t have to be too long. As simple as two minutes of focusing on your breath is totally enough.

Mindfulness helps you improve your thoughts. Thoughts turn into desire and desire turns into actions. By controlling your thoughts you’re less likely to indulge in foods that you know are not good for you. My binge eating habit nearly disappeared after practicing mindfulness on a daily basis.

3. Improve Yourself Every Day

Or as Warren Buffett said: You have to develop the habits of success. Realize that your life is constantly under construction. You were not born perfect and neither was I. Try to constantly change your life for the better. This way you will find new ways to better your health and lose the excess fat on your tummy.

Start Losing Your Belly Fat

Take immediate action. The previous list may seem long and tedious, but don’t get discouraged. Start small. Small changes add up over the long-term.

Ask yourself: Have you washed your dishes today? If not, stop reading this article right now and wash your dishes. Don’t search for excuses, simply do it right now. Once you’ve washed your dishes, ask yourself: Have I made my bed this morning? No? Immediately start making your bed.

These habits may seem insignificant to you, but trust me, they will help you get momentum in your life.

There are two options: Either you control your mind, or your mind controls you.

To watch a video on how to better control your mind and become limitless, while losing your belly fat, of course, click here.

Get wellness tips, workout trends, healthy eating, and more delivered right to your inbox with our Be Well newsletter.

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

There aren’t many people who don’t want a slimmer waistline or six pack abs. Problem is, that kind of midsection is really hard to achieve.

Hard—but not impossible.

The good news is, you don’t need to do thousands of sit-ups, take tons of supplements, starve yourself, or undergo drastic surgery to tone and tighten your waistline. Here are 10 simple rules I share with my clients to help them win the belly-fat battle—once and for all.

1. Stop Doing 500 Crunches a Day
Doing tons of crunches (and other ab exercises) will build muscle in the abdominals, but it won’t do anything to burn your belly fat. Unfortunately, you cannot reduce the amount of fat in one specific area of your body. You must lose overall fat throughout the entire body to trim your waistline. Keep reading to learn how.

2. Lift Weights
Lifting weights will help build muscle, prevent muscle loss and boost fat loss. Although spot reduction is not possible (see above), performing resistance training exercises that work large (and multiple) muscle groups will burn the most calories.

3. Eat Right
Training hard will give you muscular abs, but if you continue to eat junk, you will forever have a layer of belly fat on top of those muscles. Your first step is to stop eating processed food, and start eating whole foods like the ones below.

Protein: Meat, poultry, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, whey protein, etc.
Veggies: Broccoli, asparagus, spinach, kale, salad, etc.
Fruits: Banana, apple, orange, strawberry, raspberry, etc.
Healthy fats: Fish oil, nuts, flax seed, olive oil, etc.
Carbs: Whole-grain pasta, brown rice, oats, etc.

Use these simple tips to improve your nutrition habits: Eat breakfast. Eat every three hours. Eat proteins, veggies and fruit with every meal. Eat the majority of your carbs immediately after your workout. Drink two cups of water with every meal. Eat unprocessed, whole foods 90 percent of the time.

4. Kick Up Your Cardio
Along with lifting weights and eating right, do 15 to 45 minutes of intense cardio three times per week to help burn more calories and reduce overall body fat.

5. Say Goodbye to Alcohol
Remember: calories consumed while drinking count, too, so be careful what you put in your glass. You can have alcohol on a very limited basis, but if you continue to drink daily, you can forget about losing your belly fat. This means limiting your drinking to only a couple drinks on Fridays and Saturdays at the most.

6. Cut Down on Crappy Carbs
Carbohydrates have gotten a bad rap over the years. The fact is, they’re needed for energy, but most people eat a lot more carbs than they actually need. Any extra carbs taken in over the course of the day will be stored as fat, so it’s important to maintain a healthy balance. You can continue to eat fruits and vegetables, but reduce the amount of pasta and breads that you consume throughout the day. And when you do go for grains, make them whole grains. (See suggestions here.)

7. Eat More Calories
Nope, that’s not a type-o. The majority of my personal-training clients who first start with me are actually eating too few calories as opposed to eating too many. If you aren’t getting enough calories, you’re slowing your body’s metabolism down, which means you’ll retain more fat than if you were to eat the proper amount of calories. Eating too few calories will also cause you to burn muscle, not fat, for energy, causing you to be skinny and fat. (Yes, it really happens.) And remember that since calories are energy, eating too few of them will tank your energy stores, meaning you’ll have a hard time getting through the day, much less putting in a good workout.

To find out how many calories you should be consuming, use an online calculator like this to crunch the numbers for you. Then, keep a food diary (or use a program like My Fitness Pal—it’s free!—which totals your daily calories for you) so you can keep track.

8. Eat More Protein
Your body burns more energy processing proteins than it does processing carbs or fat. So if you want to burn fat, take in more protein. Of course, you want to get this protein from a quality source. That means your source of protein should not be a burger from McDonalds or a sausage pizza from Domino’s.

9. Take in Healthy Fats
In our fat-free obsessed world, it’s hard for some to comprehend that fat does not necessarily make you fat. If you don’t consume enough fat, your body will hold on to all of the fat it already has and not burn any more off. Again, you want to take in healthy sources of fat, like the ones on the list above.

10. Stay Motivated
Just looking at yourself in the mirror will not give you an idea of what kind of progress you’re making. You need to make clear-cut, black-and-white assessments to track your progress. This can be done by recording your weight and body composition, taking your body measurements (here’s a how-to tutorial), and taking pictures of yourself in 30-day increments.

One final thought: Remember that this belly fat didn’t appear overnight—and neither will your six pack abs. If you’re looking for a shortcut, you’re in for a rude awakening. It’s going to take a lot of hard work and dedication over a period of several weeks and months to achieve your goals. But if you stay dedicated and keep yourself on the right track, the results will come—you just have to stick with it.

Whether you’re looking forward to beach season and want to look good in a swimsuit or are simply aiming to achieve your fitness goals, losing belly fat and developing six-pack abs is the way to do it. Everybody knows that getting a six pack is not an easy task, especially if you’ve never exercised much, but the good news is that are lots of ways to achieve your goals.

From doing more cardio and exercising your abdominal muscles to increasing your protein intake, there are multiple ways to approach developing a six-pack. These methods work fine, but they generally take a lot of time before you can actually notice any results. If you want to lose belly fat and develop six-pack abs quickly, you may want to look into other options, such as EMSCULPT.

What Is EMSCULPT, and What Can It Do For Your Body?

EMSCULPT is a procedure that can help both men and women sculpt their body by building muscle. The results are achieved with the help of a device that is FDA-approved to build muscle mass and burn fat. With EMSCULPT, you can get your abs and buttocks defined and lifted in a non-surgical way that is pain-free and doesn’t involve any downtime.

The procedure works in a similar way to physical training, as it achieves the results you can get with squats and sit-ups, but instead of spending months or even years in the gym to tone your body and build muscle, you can achieve the same result in a 30-minute EMSCULPT session.

How Does It Work?

EMSCULPT is a procedure that’s currently gaining more and more popularity because it is a pain-free method for muscle building and fat burning. But since it is a rather new procedure, many potential users want to learn more about how EMSCULPT works before booking a consultation with a practitioner.

The first thing you need to know about EMSCULPT is that it is a device approved by the FDA. It is, in fact, the first device of this kind to get FDA approval, and it involves no surgery whatsoever, which means that you don’t have to spend any time in bed or take days off from work to benefit from the results.

EMSCULPT is backed by seven clinical studies that offer evidence of enhanced muscle definition in the abs and buttocks as well as fat loss after just four sessions. To put it simply, EMSCULPT works by inducing optimized contractions into your muscles with the help of a technology called High Intensity, Focused Electro-Magnetic Energy (HIFEM).

A single 30-minute session with EMSCULPT provides the same results as approximately 20,000 sit-ups or squats. The result is that you get your muscles defined and toned in a pain-free way that is also super-efficient. The contractions generated by the device trigger lipolysis, which results in increased fat metabolism. This means that you’ll enjoy leaner and more toned areas in your abdomen and buttocks without having to go through grueling workout sessions or go under the knife.

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

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Overall muscle definition is the sign of true health and fitness—but a six pack is the blue ribbon of weight room achievements.

Here’s the bad news: Men hold the most fat in their abdomen, says Christopher Jordan, C.S.C.S., director of exercise physiology at the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute and creator of the 7-Minute Workout.

Even worse news: You can’t spot-reduce body fat. That means your only path to revealing your washboard is to reduce overall body fat, Jordan explains. The lower your number, the higher the likelihood of a drool-worthy stomach.

Even though 18 to 24% is considered healthy by the American Council on Exercise, your abdominals are but a shadow at this number, says ACSM Health Fitness Instructor Jim White, R.D., owner of Jim White Fitness and Nutrition Studios in Virginia Beach. Cut it down to 15% and you’ll start to see the upper two abs, but the bottom probably won’t be coming in as much.

Trim off just two or three percent from there, and bam—your hard-earned six pack has stepped up from understudy to lead role. “If you’re anywhere from 6 to 13% body fat, you definitely have a six pack—in addition to being totally ripped,” White says.

However, a small percentage of men in the U.S. have a six-pack—so to get there, you have to do what the majority of people are not doing, White points out. You’re already a healthy guy, which means when it comes to taking it to the next level of lower body fat, it’s a whole lot of finesse. Here are seven key ways to make sure you’re whittling down to that level.

1. Count your calories

“It is a calories game, so portion control and size are really key,” White explains. Start honing in on where you’re eating too much. With fit guys, this is typically in the easy-to-excuse, good-for-you-foods: peanut butter, avocados, hummus. “It may be healthy, but a calorie is a calorie, so you need to portion,” he adds.

2. Balance carbs and protein

White recommends shooting for four to six ounces of protein at every meal and around half to one cup of starch, and a couple cups of vegetables. Have three main meals like this, and at least two smaller protein-heavy snacks in between. “Eating like this helps your metabolism boost and blood sugar levels stabilize—increasing fat burn—and energy levels rise, which will improve your workouts,” White adds. Plus, a study in Nutrition & Metabolism found that consuming 20 grams of protein every three hours, four times a day was better at helping men build lean body mass than eating small amounts more often or large amounts less frequently.

3. Consider cutting alcohol—or at least opting for low-calorie beers.

“Alcohol content is directly related to calorie content, so high-alcohol craft beers can be 350 to 400 calories a pop. That’s a really heavy hitter that potentially halts the fat burning process, destroys your B vitamins, causes dehydration, and feeds you empty calories—all really detrimental for your fat levels from a single source,” White explains.

4. Be mindful of mindless snacking

“A lot of us fall into the trap of, ‘Oh, I worked out so I can have an extra beer or an extra few fries,” says personal trainer and strength coach Pete McCall, C.S.C.S., instructor at Equinox in San Diego. But it matters where those extra calories are coming from. “Is being that lean and ripped important to you? If so, you can’t have the breakroom donut—sorry.”

You’re burning calories, so you can have the extra calories, but spending them on beer or fried food will thwart your efforts toward a six pack, while spending them on vegetables will help. “You need to clean up the overflow and determine where your empty calories are coming from—differentiating between calorically-dense versus nutrient-dense,” McCall adds.

5. Pay attention to how your body responds to certain macronutrients (that’s protein, fat, and carbs)

“Some people may respond well to carbohydrates, while others can’t touch a carb without blowing up to a balloon,” McCall explains. Blame your parents—your reaction is mostly genetic. But if you fall into the latter group, testing a high-fat, high-protein, low-carb diet can keep your water weight down, letting your muscle definition blaze through.

6. Get some shut-eye

Nutrition is priority numero uno—a six pack is made in the kitchen, after all. But don’t underestimate the power of sleep. Studies show that skimping on shut eye specifically boosts belly fat, so aim for a solid 7 to 8 hours a night.

7. Pump some iron and do some HIIT

As for workouts, focus on weight training to build the muscle and high intensity interval training to shed fat. “You can get abs without doing crunches, but if you want them really defined, you need an overall workout to enhance all the muscles in the body,” White adds.

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Get wellness tips, workout trends, healthy eating, and more delivered right to your inbox with our Be Well newsletter.

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

There aren’t many people who don’t want a slimmer waistline or six pack abs. Problem is, that kind of midsection is really hard to achieve.

Hard—but not impossible.

The good news is, you don’t need to do thousands of sit-ups, take tons of supplements, starve yourself, or undergo drastic surgery to tone and tighten your waistline. Here are 10 simple rules I share with my clients to help them win the belly-fat battle—once and for all.

1. Stop Doing 500 Crunches a Day
Doing tons of crunches (and other ab exercises) will build muscle in the abdominals, but it won’t do anything to burn your belly fat. Unfortunately, you cannot reduce the amount of fat in one specific area of your body. You must lose overall fat throughout the entire body to trim your waistline. Keep reading to learn how.

2. Lift Weights
Lifting weights will help build muscle, prevent muscle loss and boost fat loss. Although spot reduction is not possible (see above), performing resistance training exercises that work large (and multiple) muscle groups will burn the most calories.

3. Eat Right
Training hard will give you muscular abs, but if you continue to eat junk, you will forever have a layer of belly fat on top of those muscles. Your first step is to stop eating processed food, and start eating whole foods like the ones below.

Protein: Meat, poultry, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, whey protein, etc.
Veggies: Broccoli, asparagus, spinach, kale, salad, etc.
Fruits: Banana, apple, orange, strawberry, raspberry, etc.
Healthy fats: Fish oil, nuts, flax seed, olive oil, etc.
Carbs: Whole-grain pasta, brown rice, oats, etc.

Use these simple tips to improve your nutrition habits: Eat breakfast. Eat every three hours. Eat proteins, veggies and fruit with every meal. Eat the majority of your carbs immediately after your workout. Drink two cups of water with every meal. Eat unprocessed, whole foods 90 percent of the time.

4. Kick Up Your Cardio
Along with lifting weights and eating right, do 15 to 45 minutes of intense cardio three times per week to help burn more calories and reduce overall body fat.

5. Say Goodbye to Alcohol
Remember: calories consumed while drinking count, too, so be careful what you put in your glass. You can have alcohol on a very limited basis, but if you continue to drink daily, you can forget about losing your belly fat. This means limiting your drinking to only a couple drinks on Fridays and Saturdays at the most.

6. Cut Down on Crappy Carbs
Carbohydrates have gotten a bad rap over the years. The fact is, they’re needed for energy, but most people eat a lot more carbs than they actually need. Any extra carbs taken in over the course of the day will be stored as fat, so it’s important to maintain a healthy balance. You can continue to eat fruits and vegetables, but reduce the amount of pasta and breads that you consume throughout the day. And when you do go for grains, make them whole grains. (See suggestions here.)

7. Eat More Calories
Nope, that’s not a type-o. The majority of my personal-training clients who first start with me are actually eating too few calories as opposed to eating too many. If you aren’t getting enough calories, you’re slowing your body’s metabolism down, which means you’ll retain more fat than if you were to eat the proper amount of calories. Eating too few calories will also cause you to burn muscle, not fat, for energy, causing you to be skinny and fat. (Yes, it really happens.) And remember that since calories are energy, eating too few of them will tank your energy stores, meaning you’ll have a hard time getting through the day, much less putting in a good workout.

To find out how many calories you should be consuming, use an online calculator like this to crunch the numbers for you. Then, keep a food diary (or use a program like My Fitness Pal—it’s free!—which totals your daily calories for you) so you can keep track.

8. Eat More Protein
Your body burns more energy processing proteins than it does processing carbs or fat. So if you want to burn fat, take in more protein. Of course, you want to get this protein from a quality source. That means your source of protein should not be a burger from McDonalds or a sausage pizza from Domino’s.

9. Take in Healthy Fats
In our fat-free obsessed world, it’s hard for some to comprehend that fat does not necessarily make you fat. If you don’t consume enough fat, your body will hold on to all of the fat it already has and not burn any more off. Again, you want to take in healthy sources of fat, like the ones on the list above.

10. Stay Motivated
Just looking at yourself in the mirror will not give you an idea of what kind of progress you’re making. You need to make clear-cut, black-and-white assessments to track your progress. This can be done by recording your weight and body composition, taking your body measurements (here’s a how-to tutorial), and taking pictures of yourself in 30-day increments.

One final thought: Remember that this belly fat didn’t appear overnight—and neither will your six pack abs. If you’re looking for a shortcut, you’re in for a rude awakening. It’s going to take a lot of hard work and dedication over a period of several weeks and months to achieve your goals. But if you stay dedicated and keep yourself on the right track, the results will come—you just have to stick with it.

I have been working out regularly for 5 years but can never get rid of the last layer of fat around my abdomen. What is the key to a six pack?

How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

  1. Monitor – Begin keeping a food log if you haven’t already. Monitor your food intake and start cutting between 250 to 500 calories a day. The best way to do this is by eliminating empty calorie foods such as soda, alcohol, and processed foods.

Strength Training – Becoming familiar with the weight room is important when it comes to burning fat. Utilizing compound movements such as the squat, deadlift, and overhead press is the best way to burn the maximum amount of calories. Also, at night during your R.E.M. cycles, your body will release a larger amount of fat burning, repair hormones such as testosterone and H.G.H. Lift your way to a flat stomach.

High Intensity Interval Training – In conjunction with your strength training, you need to be incorporating a high intensity cardiovascular workout. This is where HIIT comes in. HIIT involves taking a set number of compound bodyweight-based exercises, typically 8 to 10, and performing them in rapid succession. Once the last exercise is complete, take a 60 to 90 second break and begin again. Complete 2 to 3 sets for beginners and 4 to 6 sets for advanced lifters.

Our popular Get Fit at Home and Slim, Lean & Strong (if you go to a gym) workout programs are based on the highly effective HIIT workouts.

Eat! – In order to maximize your metabolic rate, it is best to begin eating immediately upon waking and continuing every 2 to 3 hours. This will ensure that your metabolic rate stays elevated and keeps burning calories throughout the day. Eat small, equally portioned meals of protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats.

  • Consistency – You need to be consistent in these new habits if you ever want to shed the last bit of fat on your stomach. Dedicate yourself to these behaviors. Think of them as a lifestyle and not as a temporary holiday. Force yourself to adopt this new way of living with rewards and friendly competition. Your results will be your key motivation to keep going.
  • In this Article

    In this Article

    In this Article

    • Exercises to Help Belly Fat
    • Safety Considerations

    As people get older, it’s common to see an increase of belly fat collect along the waistline. This is usually because muscle mass decreases with age as fat increases. Belly fat can make you feel self-conscious or can cause difficulty fitting into your favorite pair of pants.

    However, there are also some health risks associated with excess belly fat, including:

    • High blood pressure
    • High cholesterol
    • Type 2 diabetes
    • Breathing problems
    • Heart disease

    Because of these risks, it’s a good idea to try to control your belly fat. There are three types of belly fat: subcutaneous, intramuscular, and visceral. Visceral fat is the type that sits between your organs and is known as belly fat. Even if you have a normal weight and body mass index (BMI), too much visceral belly fat can still lead to a variety of health problems.

    Exercises to Help Belly Fat

    There are many exercises out there, but not all are created equal when it comes to banishing belly fat. However, scientists and doctors alike agree that incorporating physical activity into your daily routine is a great way to burn off unwanted belly fat. Here are some exercises for belly fat that you can try to help you slim down your waistline.

    Aerobic or Cardio Exercise

    Your first step in burning off visceral fat is including at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise or cardio into your daily routine. Studies show that aerobic exercises for belly fat help to reduce belly fat and liver fat.

    Some great cardio of aerobic exercises for belly fat include:

    • Walking, especially at a quick pace
    • Running
    • Biking
    • Rowing
    • Swimming
    • Cycling
    • Group fitness classes

    When choosing a cardio activity, make sure it’s something that you enjoy doing. This way, you’re more motivated and will look forward to your exercise routine.

    HIIT or Interval Training

    High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and interval training are exercise routines that incorporate short bursts of intense exercise mixed in with lower intensity moves and rest periods. Research shows that HIIT exercises for belly fat help control weight and improve your overall physical condition.

    Continued

    These routines aren’t very time-consuming but still get your heart pumping and work your entire body. Each routine has a selection of activities that include the following movements:

    • Pushing
    • Pulling
    • Squatting
    • Deadlifting
    • Loaded carries

    Typically, a HIIT routine pairs 30 seconds of intense activity with 30 seconds of rest right after before moving on to the next activity. The sequence can be repeated a few times to get the maximum benefit.

    Some HIIT exercises that people of all fitness levels and ages can try are:

    • Jumping jacks
    • Burpees
    • Push-ups
    • Jump squats
    • High knees

    To get started, choose a handful of HIIT exercises for belly fat. Perform one activity for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds. Do the next activity, and then rest. When you finish all the activities, you can repeat the cycle a few more times.

    Abdominal Exercises

    Because belly fat sticks to the waistline and stomach region, doing some abdominal exercises can help to combat it. They can help to tone and flatten the stomach while providing you with a good source of exercise.

    These exercises are great for men and women of any age. Some abdominal exercises for belly fat that you can try at home include:

    • 60-second planks
    • Bicycle crunches
    • Abdominal crunches
    • Leg lifts

    Weight and Resistance Training

    Weight training is also an important component of burning off belly fat. Since muscles burn off more calories than fat does when the body is at rest, having more muscle tone can help you to burn off more fat. Researchers have also found that resistance training, which includes weight training, can increase lean weight while decreasing fat, and it can boost metabolism at the same time.

    Some weight training exercises for belly fat to include in your routine are:

    • Bicep curls
    • Lunges
    • Squats
    • Tricep kick-backs

    With these exercises, you can do 12 repetitions with lighter weights, between five and eight pounds. Another option is to use heavier weights with fewer repetitions and rest time between sets.

    Safety Considerations

    While it’s important to get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day, you don’t want to overtrain and push yourself too hard. Sometimes when you overtrain, your body can produce too much cortisol. This is a stress hormone that is associated with belly fat, so overtraining may actually make it more difficult to burn off belly fat. Just keep in mind the recommendations for moderate regular exercise, and talk with your doctor if you have questions about how else your exercise routine can benefit your waistline.

    Sources

    Current sports medicine reports: “Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health.”

    For Care, Education, and Research: “The 12 Best Exercises to Lose Belly Fat for Men and Women.”

    Journal of hepatology: “Effect of aerobic exercise training dose on liver fat and visceral adiposity.”

    Mayo Clinic: “Belly fat in women: Taking and keeping it off.”

    Rush University: “Losing Belly Fat.”

    Texas Health: “Fit After 40: How to Fight Stubborn Belly Fat.”

    “I have obliques now. Obliques!”

    How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

    This article was written by Jenny Sugar and repurposed with permission from POPSUGAR Fitness.

    I started running after college to lose that Freshman 40 I was holding on to. I learned a lot along the way, like what socks prevent blisters and how to shop for a sports bra so you don’t have to wear two. But what I struggled with was losing weight, specifically belly fat. And after 15 years of running I couldn’t outrun that still-pudgy pooch.

    So I signed up for a half-marathon. I was convinced that all those training runs would surely slim my middle, but when I stepped on the scale, I was completely wrong. I was gaining weight because the hunger that came with those long workouts made me want to eat all the time. After the race, although I made some changes to my eating schedule to lose the weight I’d gained during training, my squishy belly wasn’t budging, and it pissed me off. It wasn’t like I was going to run more often or for longer distances. It was quite by accident that I figured out how running could help me ditch my mummy tummy.

    How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

    One morning, I skipped the hour-long flat road run and turned into the woods near my house. I let my dog, Reuben, off leash, and we just started running. My pace was much slower because the terrain was so unpredictable. Rain had eroded away the path, creating holes, plus the slippery wooden bridges, the rocks and logs to leap over, and the hills — man, were there hills! I was huffing and puffing way more than on my previous runs, and my quads, calves, and butt were burning. I had to swing my arms more to get up those steep inclines, and trying to catch up to my dog added a little fire to my step. At the end of my 20-minute run, I felt like I did after running two hours.

    After just two weeks of running those trails and those crazy hills, I felt an incredible sense of strength in my legs I hadn’t experienced before in the 12 weeks I was training for the half. In the obstacle course that is the woods, my muscles were constantly guessing, since running in the woods is completely different than running on a sidewalk or a treadmill. It’s like a dance because there’s no monotony of movement. Every step is a little different, a little shift to one side or the other, a little shorter or longer than the one before.

    How to lose belly fat from a big belly to sixpack

    Interval training had always seemed so forced when running through my neighborhood: I felt a little weird sprinting past my neighbor’s house, so I skipped them and just stuck to my 9:40 minute-per-mile pace. But the hills forced me to switch up my pace, and I knew this type of training would be the key to ditching my tummy. Running this way was also really challenging to my mind. I felt a complete sense of calm afterward that I wasn’t able to get to unless I did a long training run. Instant runner’s high in just 20 minutes? I was floored.

    And the added perk? My belly looked slimmer. I could see definition in my obliques—I had obliques! By no means am I saying I have a six-pack after a month of running in the woods, but I see now that I was pushing myself in the wrong way. I was working harder, not smarter. If you’re struggling with a weight-loss plateau from running, the answer for you, too, might be found in the woods.

    Belly fat breathing problems are a common reason people see their doctor, although often they haven’t made the link.

    How Does Belly Fat Cause Breathing Problems?

    Belly fat makes breathing more labour intensive and difficult according to a French study back in 2009 that looked at 120,000 people.

    Your major breathing muscle is your diaphragm. This is a big sheet of muscle separating the contents of your chest, and the contents of your abdomen.

    When your diaphragm contracts it comes down, and your belly moves out. This action expands your lungs and draws air in. This is really easy to see in babies and young children, because they tend to be predominantly diaphragmatic breathers.

    The more abdominal fat you have the more difficult it is for your diaphragm to contract, because it’s working against the mechanical obstruction created by the fat.

    This makes breathing hard work. It also restricts the amount your lungs can expand, and therefore the amount of oxygen you can take in. This leads to getting out of breath with sometimes very minimal physical effort.

    Some people’s belly fat breathing problems get worse with laying down and bending over. These actions constrict the lungs expansion capacity even more.

    Some people are carrying so much abdominal fat it pretty much totally impedes the diaphragm from working. When this is the case the muscles around the chest wall have to pick up that slack to expand the lungs so you can breathe.

    Chest breathing requires more muscular effort than diaphragmatic breathing, so you tend to feel tired and out of breath very quickly with activity.

    Overweight In Your Upper Body Too?

    If you’re carrying a lot of excess weight on your chest as well – breathing is very hard work, because in addition to your diaphragm working against your belly, your chest muscles are working to lift the fat on your chest so you can take air in.

    This makes breathing, which normal requires hardly any effort, quite difficult.

    A whole day of working muscles hard just to breath causes fatigue, as well as belly fat breathing problems.

    A Serious Problem

    If you’ve got to the point that bending over to tie your shoe laces causes you to feel out of breath – you’re in real trouble with your health.

    Belly fat isn’t just restricting your lungs, it’s putting enormous pressure on your heart too.

    The sooner you do something about it the better, because it’s going to shorten your life one way or another.

    Losing Belly Fat

    If physical activity is making you uncomfortably out of breath, swimming might be a good place to start as this takes some of the physical pressure off your lungs.

    Walking To Lose Belly Fat is another great way to help yourself out.

    Have a great week!

    PS For those really serious about regaining your health you could consider some coaching to get you on track – click here.