The biggest mistake in trying to lose belly fat is doing the wrong type of exercise (such as an excessive focus on abs), and not having a proper food intake. No matter how toned your abs are, your belly won’t look flat until you get rid of the layer of fat on top of it. And to do so, you need to either rev up your calorie burn through more intelligent training methods or eat cleaner with fewer calories.
When discussing training, it’s imperative to realize that you can’t burn fat from a specific body part by excessively training that particular body region. In general, abdominal workouts don’t burn a lot of fat. Interval training, on the other hand, is a great way to increase your calorie burn, even after exercising. With this training method, you alternate high-intensity bursts of activity with easier bouts, helping to blast more belly fat than steady-state cardio sessions.
Here are a few examples of exercises that will help you burn fat:
1. Squat Jumps: go into a deep squat and on the way back up jump high while bending your knees toward your chest. This exercise will really get your heart rate jumping, but it’s not for everyone. This is especially true if you have bad knees or are physically incapable of performing such an exercise. But it works lethally for those who can do it. Otherwise, perhaps squat and do a small hop, or barring this, simply squat and stand. But keep doing the exercise in an interval fashion.
2. Renegade Rows – Take two dumbbells and place them on the floor at about shoulder width distance. Put one hand on each dumbbell and get into a push up position. In a rowing motion, lift one dumbbell and pull it back with your elbow rising to the ceiling and past your body. You’re now supporting your body with one hand and your feet and the weight should be alongside your chest. Lower the dumbbell gently to the floor and repeat with the other hand. This is one repetition. Now do 8-10 repetitions and take a short rest, repeating the sequence 4-5 times. This exercise works as a core and back stabilizer, as well as hitting the biceps, shoulders and forearms.
3. Burpees – To do a proper burpee, get into a push up position, jump to bring both legs toward your hands, straighten up, and then jump high into the air. Reverse this sequence on the way down. This is one repetition. If you have trouble with this variation, then simply put your hands on the ground, step back with both feet, step forward again with both and stand, doing a small hop. Either way, do in an interval fashion and repeat a good number of times to get thoroughly tired, according to your fitness level.
Clean eating is also is a crucial component of fat loss. I find that most people do not have the initiative, ability or the time to keep training at a high level for long periods of time, which means they have to eat smart and train moderately, for shorter periods of time. Therefore combine shorter periods of interval training (15-30 minutes) with foods that have high nutrient, high fibre and low-calorie counts. These are usually foods which are natural, so focus on smaller and unrefined portions of carbohydrates each meal, including proteins, healthy fats and fruits.
Such foods include oatmeal, berries, beans/legumes, lean protein like chicken, greens like spinach, fibre and nuts. Some of these are great flat belly foods, and should be included in any fat loss diet. Avoid canned and boxed foods which are little more than belly fat fertilizer. They generally contain rancid fats, chemicals, and over undesirable elements.
So there you have it – a lifestyle change that is effective and fits your busy schedule. Try it for better results.