We all know that melting belly fat is a myth. If only it was as easy as melting butter or chocolate, unfortunately, it isn’t, and in fact, those two can be part of the reason the belly fat is there. However, you can start to form a taut, stronger core and reduce belly fat by consistently performing the right types of exercise.
Why get rid of belly fat? Research has shown a higher risk of health problems like diabetes, heart disease, strokes and certain cancers. Incorporate exercise and lifestyle changes—for example, your diet—and you can reduce your belly fat and achieve a look you are happy with.
Different trainers have different opinions on which exercises work best for belly fat, but most agree that only focusing on the abdominals is not the answer. Instead, it is far better to do exercises combining cardio, strength, and core work that will ultimately help you reduce body fat.
Below are several exercises you can introduce into an exercise routine to combat belly fat. Still, it is important to know that you don’t overdo exercises at the start of any fitness routine. 30 mins a day is a good starting point for you to build upon as your strength and fitness grow together. Overtraining can sometimes overturn what you are trying to achieve. For example, if you push too hard, your body can produce a stress hormone called cortisol. This stress hormone has links to body fat that, if you overtrain it, can make it more difficult to burn off belly fat. Also, remember that different genetics can affect how and where you store fat in the body, so manage your expectations.
Remember to warm up for 10 mins before and after any exercise.
Let’s Start With Walking
This is a simple yet effective way to bring cardio exercise into your life. A daily, brisk 30-minute walk can help reduce fat throughout your body, including your belly, and it positively affects your metabolism and heart rate.
Keep good form when walking briskly. Head up, eyes front, shoulders relaxed, back; don’t hunch them up. Let your arms swing naturally from the shoulders, not elbows and don’t swing high. Tuck your abs as tight as possible, but don’t stick your belly out. Don’t stamp your feet. Tread lightly, roll from your heel to your toes, keep your pace even and don’t use too long a stride. Walking up inclines gets your heart rate working that bit faster!
How About Cycling?
Another way to burn calories fast, speed up your metabolism and see your belly fat reduce. Consider a commute to work by bike or purchase an indoor bike to work on at home, building confidence and reducing your belly fat.
Exercises To Do At Home
You can select several exercises to make your own routine; these three offer a good programme for beginners and add to the routine of those who regularly work out.
These get your heart pumping and work your core, quads, shoulders, lats, triceps and chest. To do this exercise,
- Stand tall with your feet shoulder-wide.
- Bend your knees into a low squat – the ‘frog’ position.
- Push your legs back into a plank or push-up position – jump into this if you can.
- Then hop back into the frog position.
- From there, jump as high as you can with your arms expanded. Land softly.
- Do 3 sets of burpees, take a short rest and aim to do this 8 times.
Lying Leg Raises
- Lie down comfortably on a mat or gym flooring with your back straight, not arched
- Place your thumbs under your hips with your hands flat on the floor.
- Slightly lift your feet off the ground, look at the ceiling and tighten your core.
- Slowly raise your legs to 90 degrees.
- Just as slowly bring them back down.
- Just before your feet touch the mat, start to raise them again.
- Aim for 3 sets of 15 raises.
- Avoid placing your feet completely on the floor and don’t push your hips up with your hands as you lift your legs.
This exercise is done slowly, with no rush, breathing easily through the sets.
- Lie comfortably on a mat with your back straight, not arched.
- Put your palms under your hips.
- Raise your upper body, head and legs off the mat.
- Lower your left leg, and just before it touches the floor, lift it up again,
- At the same time, lower the right leg.
- Do this 12 x for one set. Aim for 3 sets of 12 reps.