Oh, the troublesome tummy. No matter how hard you bust your bum on the treadmill out or limit your caloric intake, it can seem impossible to shed that last little pudge above your abdomen. From fitness experts and athletes to weekday work-out-aholics, it’s obvious that the belly zone is a point of contention for many, and everyone has their own theories on how to drop the jiggle. Luckily, we have five tried and true methods to target tummy fat and help you shape the sexy abs you’ve been working so hard to achieve.
1. Forget old school sit-ups.
Although this popular work out move has been condoned by decades of exercise videos, recent studies have unearthed some concerning facts. Crunches and sit-ups, though sometimes effective, put strain on your back at its weakest point and can cause serious damage to your spinal disks
2. Pick up the Plank.
Building core endurance is important not only to losing the tummy tire, but it also builds a foundation for all-over endurance. Here’s how:
a. Start in a face-down lying position.
b. Push off the floor using your elbows and toes.
c. Keep your back flat and parallel to the floor.
d. Contract both your abs and glutes.
e. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute, the repeat 3 to 5 times.
3. Cut out foods that are high in sugar and fat.
While this tip is a given for any fitness regimen, it is especially important for reducing body fat in areas where we carry it the most.
4. Switch it up.
If you do the same exercises day after day, week after week, eventually you’re going to reach a plateau in which it seems you can’t achieve any new results. By switching it up, you can shock your muscles back into action. Instead of running every day, try swimming, kick-boxing or attending a Zumba class a couple times a week.
5. Don’t starve.
People who obsess over weight and dieting are at a higher risk for developing eating disorders – especially women. However, starving yourself to lose weight is counterproductive. Not only will you lose muscle mass, but you’ll mess with your metabolism and cause serious and often permanent damage to your vital organs. Make healthy choices and never deprive yourself of important nutrients.