Having a few extra pounds around the middle is something that happens to many of us as we age. Almost as sure as it is that you might gain a few extra pounds, you will probably want to drop them quickly to fit into a favorite pair of jeans or look a little better in some summer fashion.
Most weight gain happens slowly, but there is temptation to want to lose weight fast. As is often the case in life, slow and steady wins the race. Quick ways to drop weight usually come with dangerous downsides, but working hard and picking the right exercises can bring lasting results in less time than you might think.
Conventional wisdom has long suggested that cardio workouts and crunches are the best ways to lose belly fat. New research has shown that while cardio helps, there are other ways to burn fat fast. Keeping your heart rate high is important for fat loss, so you don’t have to spend half your day running to melt away the pounds. High intensity interval training or HIIT workouts are some of the best exercises for quickly losing fat.
Full body exercises that engage multiple muscle groups in both the upper and lower body are the best ways to burn stomach fat. If you are looking for a flat stomach, you are going to have to build muscle throughout your body. Core exercises are important, but engaging your legs and glutes will burn significantly more calories than just adding more reps on push-ups and crunches.
Rapid fat loss may be a tantalizing concept, but quickly dropping pounds is rarely a safe way to lose weight or keep it off. The amount of fat you can safely lose in 10 days is very small, but you can use that time to build habits and start a workout program that can bring results over time.
If you want to lose some extra pounds and keep them off, you will need to spend time doing exercises that safely raise your heart rate and build muscle to help you keep extra body fat at bay. Keeping your body fat percentage low by balancing cardiovascular activities, lifting weights, and eating a healthy, high-protein diet will give you the best chance of losing weight in a healthy manner.
HIIT workouts can be difficult for beginners, as many of them require you to build a base of strength and maintain proper technique so you don’t risk injuring yourself. Exercises like burpees or mountain climbers can be very hard at first if you have never worked out before, but working with a coach or athletic trainer can help you find a way to modify exercises until you build the base of strength you need to perform the movements correctly.
Abdominal muscles were always considered important for belly fat loss workouts, but with HIIT workouts and strength training, it is even more important to strengthen your abs and lower back. Core strength is important for everything from push-ups to lunges. When you first begin exercising, even a few repetitions can be enough to tire your core muscles, which can cause your form to break down, increasing your chances of injury. This is why it is important to focus on building strength slowly.
If you do not have a history of working out regularly, starting with a small number of push-ups, sit-ups, and plank position holds can begin strengthening your abdominal muscles and obliques that are necessary for helping prevent the injury or back pain that can happen to people who begin a workout routine but haven’t strengthened their core muscles enough to support more advanced exercises.
It is also important to warm up properly before you begin a HIIT workout. This can involve some low-intensity cardio exercise to get your heart rate up, which will also burn calories. From there, beginning with some push-ups or a few reps of static exercises such as holding a plank position can warm up the muscles in your arms and back before you start doing more dynamic exercises. Some people will also incorporate jumping jacks as a way to keep their heart rate high before they dive into a full body workout.
One of the great things about high intensity interval training is that it involves both your lower and upper body, and it can be done as a home workout. For people who don’t have access to a gym, you can find ways to burn belly fat from the comfort of your home.
One thing to be aware of if you are trying to lose belly fat is that not all abdominal fat is the same as fat stored elsewhere on the body. If you have certain medical conditions or you are experiencing high levels of stress, your body can add more visceral fat around your waistline. This fat can be harder to lose than the subcutaneous fat stored elsewhere on the body.
The conditions linked to increased levels of abdominal fat are typically signs of greater health dangers. Many of these conditions can be related to poor cardiovascular health, which is one more reason you should be cautious if you are starting a new workout program. A few of these conditions and diseases include:
Trying to lose a few pounds to fit into a favorite pair of pants is one thing, but making a change in your overall body composition is something that can take more time and effort. If you have been carrying extra body weight for years, or if you have reached the point where your body mass index puts you in the category of obesity, it can take weeks or months of steady work to build the habits needed to lose weight slowly in a healthy, sustainable manner.
Individuals who drop weight quickly are often at risk of rebound weight gain. Crash dieting, fasting, or other attempts to lose weight quickly can stress the body and prompt it to store fat more readily when it has the chance. This is why fad diets can be so dangerous, and ultimately why they are less successful than putting in the hard work to lose weight the correct way.
By changing your lifestyle, diet, and habits to allow your body to maintain a healthy caloric deficit, you will lose weight over time. You may want to see the fat go away immediately, but taking a little more time to lose weight the correct way will help ensure you find the lasting freedom from excess body weight.
There are times, though, when exercise and dietary changes are not possible or they are not producing the effects you are looking for. In these cases, you might need to look into other solutions to help you lose weight. For some people, this might mean something like Wegovy weight loss medication, or it could be a minimally invasive procedure such as endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty.
Whatever the next step is for you in finding a healthy weight for your body, it is important to do it safely and with the advice of people who know the pitfalls and possibilities of losing weight the right way. If you are ready to see the options available, request a consultation with True You today.