After 11 years in the personal training industry, it has become apparent to me that the one thing clients want to get rid of is annoying and stubborn belly fat.
Belly fat is more than a nuisance that makes your clothes feel tight.
There are few fitness accolades perceived to be higher than a washboard stomach, living proof that you've put your hours in at the gym and watch your diet, all in the name of dishing out a one-two punch to belly fat.
Providing it's done safely and correctly, a toned stomach is an outward sign that you keep fit and watch what you eat. That said, there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach to eradicating your mid-riff and, despite what questionable fitness advice on the internet spouts, you cannot target — or 'spot-reduce' — areas of fat on your body.
Types of Belly Fat
Visceral fat is seriously harmful. This is the fat you can't see, which forms around your organs and has been proven to increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
The soft layer of chub that sits directly under the skin - the wobbly bits - and is generally harmless.
Exercise That Don't Work
Knowing what exercises to do is crititcal to your sucess, but it really comes down to the type of exercise. Obviously, not all exercises are not made equal.
However, they probably aren't the excercises you think. Let's start with the ones you you shouldn't do, but everyone does (or has done).
Abdominal exercises. According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning, these kind of exercises will help strengthen your abdominal muscles, even tone them, but they won't shift the layer of fat above them. You simply can't use spot reduction to target a specific body part for weight loss.
In order to reduce belly fat you'll have to reduce the body fat percentage on your whole body. Here's the crazy part, you have no real control over where you'll lose the fat first.
Here are 5 exercises that help you burn belly fat.
A study published in the Journal of Strength Conditioning Research found that participants burned up to 30 percent more calories doing a fast-paced HIIT workout over a longer, lower-intensity session for the same amount of time.
If you're looking to drop weight around your midriff (and burn belly fat) — or anywhere else, for that matter — few exercises are better than short, sharp cardio bouts.
To start, hit fifteen sets of 20 seconds sprinting with 40 seconds rest, and gradually increase your work:rest ratio.
2. Medicine Ball Slam
Perfoming explosive movements like the med-ball slam requires all the muscles between your neck and your hips to work together. This is essentially your core, and your core is your centre of power.
In fact, if you pick up the pace and propel the ball with more power and velocity, you'll elevate your heart rate and burn some serious belly fat.
3. Kettlebell Swing
The explosive nature of this movement skyrockets your heart rate right away, but it also hammers your core.
The kettlebell swing might be one of the best calorie-torching exercises of all time. In order to propel the heavy ball of iron, you need to engage big fat-burning muscle groups like your glutes, hips, and quads.
4. Mountain Climbers
Think of the mountain climber as a moving plank. You perform a mini crunch when you explosively draw one knee into your chest.
What makes this move so difficult, is that your core has to work overtime to keep your body stable and straight every time you lift a foot off of the floor.
A study from the American College of Sports Medicine found that 10 fast-paced burpees are just as effective at revving your metabolism as a 30-second all-out sprint, so you can burn your belly fat faster than ever before.
If you want to lose your gut and torch belly fat, you need to work as many muscles as possible. The burpee does just that. The explosive exercise – which entails going from a push-up position to a jump and back to a push-up position – hits every muscle from head to toe.
Look no further, you literally have all the secret exercises to torch belly fat. I recommend doing all 5 exercises interval style for more fat burning capabilites. For example, do any reps as you can for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds and repeat for a total 8 rounds (or 4 minutes).