Quite often in the past we would have someone show up at our personal training studio saying “I just need to lose this! How can I lose belly fat?” as they point to their big belly, or maybe their rear end or the jiggle under their arms. Then they say, “Can we do lots of abs today because I just have to get rid of this, I can’t stand how fat my stomach is. How can I lose my belly fat? Is it really possible?” Are you one of those people who go to the gym and make a beeline for the abs class or the adductor/abductor machine to work you inner and outer thighs with the intention of whittling the fat away through exercise? You keep saying if I only do 1000 crunches everyday I will have great abs like that girl on the fitness magazine cover or if I only work my huge thighs more they will get smaller so I can fit into my favorite jeans. Sound familiar?
Unfortunately, still to this day many, many people remain under the assumption that working a particular body part will get rid of the fat in that area and somehow make that problem area smaller. Not so, in fact you will probably push your fat out more if you just so happen to put muscle on in that area from weight training before you minimize the body-fat. Then you will look bigger in your problem area, at least momentarily, until that muscle goes to work for you. Uh oh! So then how do you lose that big belly, big butt or jiggly arms?
There are 4 components to transforming a flabby, unhealthy out of shape body into a firm, strong and healthy body.
1. How much, when and what you feed your body is vitally important. Are you eating junk with no nutritional value (sugar anyone?) and expecting an incredible body? Do you eat live, from the earth, as God made it food or are you eating McDee’s every morning? These are important questions that have to be addressed before anything else. What you eat, how much you eat of it, when you eat it, how it’s prepared and so on is such a big topic and covered in what is healthy eating. Suffice it to say that you should be eating 4-6 small meals through-out the day. Every meal should have a quality protein source and quality carbohydrate source and of course veggies and fruits should be part of your meal planning.
2. Next focus should be the weight training. So you want to be firm and strong and you want to reduce belly fat? Well then weight training it will be. You can not get muscle without actually working that muscle out through resistance. So you must lift weights (weight train) or do some kind of resistance training to challenge your muscles to grow. Your muscle is a big factor in your metabolism and probably is still one of the most misunderstood (ignored) activity to getting fit and healthy. In a nutshell, it will help you to lose the unwanted fat by speeding up your metabolism as in more muscle, more calories needed to support that muscle. Check out Benefit's of Weight Training to read more on this!
3. Your third component is cardio. Cardio on its own, even without looking to drop body-fat and/or lose belly fat as a goal, is so important for a variety of reasons. Cardio is great for your heart, blood pressure, to relieve stress and help balance your hormones and it’s a must to lose the big butt, oversized thighs, jiggly arms or big belly. Check out this great link at bodybuilding.com for even more benefits. So get out there and work up a sweat doing something, anything you enjoy or LOVE to do because you will end up burning some calories and in turn shrink some body-fat. And some of that body-fat will be belly fat!
4. Reduce Stress by learning to decompress. Cortisol, a hormone your body secretes during times of stress, is linked to an increase in body fat. A couple things you can do today to help decrease your stress is to make sure you get enough sleep. Shoot for at least 7 hours of sleep a night and up to 9-10hrs a night. Second way to look to decompress is to find a way to relax whether that is by reading a book, playing with the kids, listening to soothing music or cooking a meal. Find what works for you and set time aside everyday to do it.
There you have it, the basic elements or four components to getting a firm, strong body versus a large, unhealthy and flabby body. So what are you waiting for? Make YOUR fitness plan using these basics and you can achieve your health and fitness goals. Subscribe below for your FREE "Food and Exercise DAILY JOURNAL" as that will help you track and record the DOING of these steps above. Plus I have included lots of information and tips to help you on your way.
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