Sunday, September 25, 2011

How to target Belly Fat

Working as a personal trainer the question that I get the most often is, " How do I get rid of belly fat?" or       "What exercise will make me lose fat on my stomach?"  People are always hoping to get some secret exercise that will give them a flat and toned midsection.  The sad truth is that this exercise does not exist.  What everyone needs to realize is that you CANNOT decide where your body loses fat.  You can do exercises to strengthen the muscles around the midsection but that will do nothing for the layer of fat sitting ontop of those muscles.  So if you have been doing endless situps in the pursuit of getting a flatter stomach, please stop.  You will save time in your workout and I am sure your spine and lower back will thank you.
  But to help answer the original question, "How do I get rid of belly fat?", I typically tell people to work their legs.  Now, you may be thinking "Why work the legs when I want to work the abs?"  Well, typically when people want to lose belly fat, what they really mean is they want to lose BODY fat.  If your body is going to lose weight, or fat, then it is going to lose the fat everywhere (ie. the arm, legs, butt, stomach, neck, face,  back, maybe even fingers).  When you have more muscle you have a higher metabolism, you tend to burn more calories, and you eventually lose excess weight.  Since the legs are the largest muscle group they have the most potential for building new muscle.  Also, when you work your legs at a significant intensity you can burn a large amount of calories... way more than if you were to do hundreds of situps.
  My recommendation to people trying to get a great midsection is to stop concentrating on the midsection.  Pay more attention to the large muscle groups like the legs, back, chest, and shoulders.  If you work those muscles often, and with sufficient intensity, you will see great gains in your body as a whole.  I do recommend working your abs ,however, for health and injury prevention.  I may write another post on that subject soon. Until then, keep working.

  ,Cagney Amerson