Exercise keeps us healthy, improves our mood, and makes us look great and feel confident. But sometimes, the exercises we do might not be delivering the benefits we want. When that happens, we can end up feeling discouraged, which can negatively impact our exercise routine for days, or even weeks!
One of the biggest struggles many people face is the stubborn fat sitting around their bellies. This extra fat develops as we age, and despite our best efforts, it can feel impossible to sweat off. However, science now shows that certain “spot exercises” - exercises that target the stomach area - can actually help you banish that belly for good. We’ve got a few routines listed below that you can try today!
Before you jump into your workout routine, you might want to learn a little about belly fat. In the medical world, it’s known as “visceral fat,” and its primary purpose is to protect your organs from injury during all the running, bouncing, and jostling around you do each day. This is, essentially a good thing!
However, when your visceral fat levels are too high (when your belly gets a little too round), this excess fat can lead to countless health problems. Doctors have linked conditions like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, dementia, and even certain cancers to an excess of visceral fat. So how can you get rid of it?
Here are a few workout routines specially built to target that visceral fat around your belly. Keep at it, and soon you’ll feel better and stronger - and you just might have those toned abs you’ve always wanted.
If you want to get rid of belly fat, you have to start by targeting the belly. After a cardio warm up (we recommend jumping rope), attack those abs with moves that improve your core strength. Do crunches, planks (spiderman planks if you’re feeling ambitious), toe touches, and side bends. Start doing each exercise for 30 seconds, and eventually work your way up to 45. Repeat each set three times so you can really feel the burn!
When most of us think about exercising our bellies, we focus on the middle--you know, where all the excess is. But if you really want to see results, you have to target all the muscles in your abdominal region. That means more than simple situps! Work your obliques with twisting situps and sideways v-ups. Use leg lifts to give your lower abs a workout. And of course, feel the burn in your midsection with bicycle crunches. Do two, three, or four sets of each exercise and you’ll be on your way to flat abs in no time.
Planking is one exercise that does a lot. If you make planking a part of your everyday workout routine, you’ll see results in your chest, butt, back, and core - but most especially your abs. Try planking in a variety of poses: with your arms extended (like you’re about to do a pushup), with your elbows on the ground, on your side, or with one leg raised. Try your best to hold the plank for up to one minute, then after a brief rest, try it again! This is a routine you can easily sneak into your day, and you’ll love how effective it is.
When you were young, your daily exercise probably consisted of running around the playground and spending time with your friends. It wasn’t a chore--in fact, exercise was downright fun. Many fitness gurus are adopting that mentality once again and re-energizing the exercise industry with fun, playful routines. In recent years, one of these fun fitness tools has taken the world by storm: the hula hoop. Hooping is a great way to trim your waist and eliminate that stubborn belly fat. After as little as thirty seconds of hooping with a weighted fitness hoop, you’ll feel that burning feeling that tells you that your abs are working!
There are many exercise routines designed to keep that belly fat away, so which one will you choose? Try one, or try them all--keep going until you find the fitness routine that best suits your style and your schedule. Every body is different, after all, so finding perfect exercise is really up to you! Good luck, and have fun getting your sweat on.
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