So, you want to lose that extra belly fat. Crunches will take care of it, right? Wrong! Remember, you can't spot reduce. All right, I guess there are some surgeons out there making a nice living doing just that, however, if you are looking for a long term fix without surgery, you will need to focus on 3 things.
1. DIET, DIET, DIET!
This doesn't mean go on a low-carbohydrate, high-fat, liquid, bark, rice cake, or noodle diet. Focus on changing your diet for good. You can't expect to lose inches if you are eating sugary and high fat foods. Also, eating two or three meals a day isn't going to cut it. You want four to six small meals (including snacks) throughout the day. Try planning breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack in between each of those meals.
2. Resistance Training.
Resistance training exercises re-shape your body. You need to build lean muscle tissue in order to burn fat. Remember, muscle is fat-burning machinery! And the more you have the more fat you can burn. Don't worry ladies; you won't get 'bulky.' Women lack the testosterone in order to build large muscle mass. Your resistance training should focus on full-body exercises (multi-joint).
This will enhance caloric expenditure and maximize your time. Try to get two to four days of resistance training. Your workout should take no longer than 45 minutes and most quality resistance training programs can be accomplished in 30 minutes.
3. Cardiovascular Training.
Run, bike, swim, hike, boot camp, elliptical trainer or whatever you like to do. The idea is to get MOVING! Cardio exercise will burn unwanted calories while improving our overall heart health. The more efficient our heart and cardiovascular system is, the easier your cardio will get. Start with 20 to 30 minutes, four to five days per week. Once this gets easy, work your way up to 45 to 60 minutes.
Nobody said it was going to be easy! But you can make it fun and make it a lifestyle! Train hard!
Nicole Clark, along with her husband, Nick, is the owner of Fitness Together-Lakewood Ranch. For more information, call 739-3682 or visit www.fitnesstogether.com/lakewoodranch.