Hi there! I have been doing NC since end Nov and having lost just over 2 stone and feeling pretty slim!! One problem ..... still can't get rid of my flabby stomach!! I know this is a problem a lot of people have but was just wondering if you could suggest anything to help?? I run 3-4 times a week - usually between 5-10 miles a time but can't do anything like press up or "planks" as I have a dodgy shoulder and can't put the weight on it!! Other than boring old situps is there any other way to get rid of this last stubborn bit of flabbiness??!! Thanks for your help! Pauline
First of all, well done for losing just over two stone, keep up the good work. To reduce the amount of body fat stored around the middle, there are three key areas to address:
1) Fat burning activities
It is essential that you include activities which are going to promote a reduction in body fat. It is great that you are running consistently as cardiovascular training is an effective method for burning calories and training your body to use body fat as fuel. Cardiovascular training can also include swimming, cycling, rowing, dancing, pretty much anything that is going to elevate the heart and breathing rate and get the muscles working!
Resistance training is the key to optimising the reduction in body fat so it is important you include this kind of training too. The development of muscle tone that results from resistance training increases your metabolic rate meaning you burn more body fat, more of the time. To ensure you get the desired physical changes you are after you need to be working with high repetitions and minimum rest periods. To do this, set up a circuit with exercises that utilise a combination of major muscle groups (squats, lunges, rows). Perform 20 repetitions of each exercise, moving from one to the next quickly and repeat the circuit 2-3 times. You don't have to be a member of a gym to enable you to perform an effective resistance session - stick to body weight exercises (such as lunges and squats) if you don't have access to gym equipment.
2) Specific core work
An abdominal circuit done up to every other day will focus on the area you want to improve and can be done in 15minutes! Below is an example of such a circuit which includes a couple of variations of the 'normal' crunch without putting too much pressure on the shoulder.
Floor crunches: simply have the feet flat on the floor, draw the tummy muscles in and lift the upper body up towards the ceiling, hold for 1 second and then lower under control. Do up to 20 repetitions, although you are looking to fatigue before then so concentrate on slow, quality movements. At the top of each crunch movement, (which wouldn't be a big movement and would not involve your lower back leaving the floor) pause and hold for 1 second while trying to consciously squeeze your abdominal muscles. The most important thing about this exercise is not the repetitions but that you REALLY feel the muscles waking up, working and tiring out!
Oblique crunches: same as above but as you lift the body upwards (with hands at ears) take one elbow towards the opposite knee. This will provide a small twist motion. Alternate sides and again look to do a maximum of 20 repetitions.
Bicycle crunches: feet off the floor with this one. The elbow comes across the body while the opposite knee comes in to meet in the middle, so you are essentially crunching across the body. Then slowly control on the way down and bring the other elbow and opposing knee into the middle. Aim NOT to let your legs drift out away from the body too much as it can encourage the lower back to get involved and help out.
See if you can manage the 3 exercises above in a circuit-type fashion, so done with minimal (if any) rest between them.
As always nutrition plays a big part in losing weight. So eat healthily, eat less, move more and be patient as your body starts to utilise the different fat stores around the body.
Hope this helps,
You are advised to seek medical advice before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle with an aim of weight loss. This website and the content provided should not be used by persons under 18, by pregnant or nursing women, or individuals with any type of health condition, except under the direct supervision of a qualified medical professional. The information contained in these articles, and elsewhere on this website, is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only, and is not intended to replace, and does not constitute legal, professional, medical or healthcare advice or diagnosis and may not be used for such purposes. Continue...
Read about all things topical and trending in the world of calorie counting, weight loss and weight maintenance