Many people find that they have problem areas where they just cannot get fat to budge. Hand’s up if you’re one of the millions who find themselves with a stubborn layer of fat around their waist?
It’s frustrating that, although you may be making an effort with your diet and trying to exercise more, sometimes it feels impossible to reduce fat around your belly. With an active lifestyle there are several steps you can take to help you become or remain trim all over.
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Breaking down the fat loss myth
I’m sorry to say that there is no such thing as spot reduction, we just don’t get to choose where our body stores fat and we can’t remove it from particular places when we decide we don’t want it. It’s a disheartening fact but hundreds of sit-ups and stomach crunches on their own won’t immediately help you lose that spare tire. The good news is that with diet and exercise together, you can burn your excess fat and by following my three belly fat busting tips that spare tire will soon deflate.
Three simple tips to help you reduce the appearance of belly fat
Here are my three go-to belly busters that help keep me stress free and in control of my figure.
Belly buster tip 1: Make time to be active
Although you can’t spot reduce and only target a flabby tummy, you shouldn’t discount the benefits of general exercise. If you can find time for a physical activity every day, then you’ll soon find yourself firming up all over.
I know you’ve heard it before but being active and becoming physically fit is also wonderful way to cut through the stress in your life. Spending time exercising can give you a time out and help you reprioritize. Even better, the time you spend exercising is time when you can’t be eating!
Belly buster tip 2: Take a deep breath
Practice conscious breathing by inhaling through your nose and letting the air expand into your tummy, then breathe out through your mouth. Stopping work and taking 5-10 conscious breaths can calm your mind and give you a rejuvenating time out. Don’t let stress creep up and leave you feeling frazzled by the end of the day, that way may lead to comfort eating. Try this breathing technique as often as you remember (you may even want to stick up a post-it note to yourself). Take the time to think about your body and how you want it to look. This mindful technique may help you avoid a donut or re-prioritize a trip to the gym.
Belly buster tip 3: Pull your shoulders back and your tummy in
Schedule a stretching break instead of a coffee break. You can do simple stretches and exercises from the comfort of your office chair or while you’re on the phone. Try pulling in your tummy when your sitting or standing for 30 seconds at a time and you’ll be strengthening your core stomach muscles. And, if you have a minute, then take a moment to stand up straight, pull your shoulders back and walk tall. Improving your posture can help make you feel more alert and in better shape.
Although there are no quick-fix solutions, you’ll instantly feel better if you begin to exercise, take control of your figure and make the time to think about you. Whatever your problem area – be it a wobbly belly, thunder thighs or a double chin – with a consistent exercise routine and patience you can improve your physique.
Written by Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.