Fitness Minutes: (6,854)
519 10/11/12 4:36 P
What a great bunch of advice you have received here. They are all right. As you lose the weight to reach your target weight the fat will decrease as well. As you become leaner and continue to work your abdominal muscles that "tummy" area will get stronger and hopefully flatter. Here's the rub, once you get a fat cell it's always going to be there. The most you can hope for is to flatten it out as much as possible. In order to get those "rock hard abs" you see on TV, a woman has to get down to around 12-15% body fat.
The suggestions to try pilates are a great idea. I would also suggest yoga. As you become more fit you may try some Zumba, Insanity, Tap-Out, or other high intensity (notice I didn't say high-impact) cardio classes 2-3 times a week. beachbody.com has several you can choose from if you prefer to workout at home.
As others suggest, give it enough time to achieve your goals. Good luck.
JUICE to you!
Fitness Minutes: (35,097)
2,167 10/11/12 4:10 P
There is no one exercise that can help. There is a solution though: You need to reduce your body fat percentage. That is possible through (1) controlling your nutrition, (2) weight lifting, (3) doing high intensity cardio exercises, (4) giving your body enough time, like at least a year, better yet two years. This is what body builders do, only longer than just 2 years. And don't worry, it is impossible for you to have huge muscles no matter how hard you train because you don't have the testosterone levels to achieve that.
I'd recommend a Pilates style core work out to strengthen the area. However, no amount of abdominal exercises will shrink the area. Fat loss is an all over body process, and your body decides where you lose fat from and when. I've lost 45 pounds and am a size 2, but I still have a jiggly belly. (I have had two kids.) I'd recommend a good full body strength program to go along with your cardio and a rock solid diet at a calorie deficit.
Fitness Minutes: (40,069)
4,472 10/11/12 1:49 P
have you tried Pilates? My belly seems flatter when I do Pilates on a regular basis. Lots of core exercises (including planks). Pilates also helps my posture, which can make you look longer & leaner.
Fitness Minutes: (74,934)
246 10/11/12 1:41 P
Okay, so you know you can't spot reduce, right? When you lose weight you'll lose it all over. You can exercise your abdominals all you want but that won't make you lose fat from your belly more quickly, it will tighten up the muscles underneath the fat. That's good for when you do lose fat, though, so don't give up! It's also good to have a strong core (torso) because it will help you be stronger all over, maintain better balance, and in general be more fit. I find it helpful to think in terms of strengthening my core, not spot-training my belly.
Crunches never do anything for me. I think planks are the best, and there are lots of variations to make them easier and harder. Most free weight exercises that you do standing or kneeling will also engage the core and work the muscles there. If you don't have weights or access to a weight room, bodyweight exercises like pushups are fantastic, as are walking lunges, in addition to planks of course.
There is some interesting research suggesting that high cortisol levels contribute to belly fat. Cortisol is a stress hormone. So meditating, yoga, etc. can reduce your stress levels -- whatever practice you find calming. Getting enough sleep (for most people, that's 8+ hours/night) also reduces cortisol. So these are things to take into account as well.
I have a question! I have always, always gained the majority of weight in my stomach. When I was younger and 115 lbs, I still had a bit of a belly. Normal crunches do not seem to help, and I am really sick of people asking me when my baby is due (I am NOT pregnant, nor have I ever been). My cousin, who has the same issue had someone tell her that she had to do a completely different type of abdominal exercise but I am not sure what that would be. Does anyone have any ideas of what I should try?
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