With summer just around the corner, your mind is probably focused on shrinking your waist and gaining a six-pack to show off on beach days. If you have been struggling to target your stomach fat despite doing crunches every day, you should stop and try different exercises!
Regardless of what popular trends and fads try to sell you, it is impossible to target specific areas of your body for weight loss. You can work out and burn fat overall, which will help shrink your waistline, and then use various exercise routines to help tone your physique until you reach the desired fitness level.
These ten exercises focus on your core, heart rate, strength, and endurance, helping you reach an even greater calorie burn and chisel your stomach.
This is a popular ab exercise, but it is also great for cardio. It uses your core, arms, and glutes while increasing your heart rate and burning fat. Start in a high plank with your hands placed underneath your shoulders. You’ll then lift your right knee towards your left shoulder before lowering it back to starting position. Switch by lifting your left knee towards your right shoulder. Continue switching legs as you increase speed.
You’ll work your core well by including Russian twists into your routine. Sit down with your knees bent, and lift your feet off the floor. Contract your abs to hold yourself in place while you lean back at a 45-degree angle. Stretch your arms straight out in front of you and twist your torso to the right and left, pausing momentarily each time to squeeze the abdominal muscles.
Remember not to swing your arms to get the movement, but use your stomach and ribs. This ab exercise usually involves a plate or medicine ball, but you can still get a good workout without one.
If you are looking for a workout that works your entire body and gets your heart rate up, try burpees! They utilize your quads, core, chest, shoulders, and triceps. You’ll start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart before going down into a squat. Place your hands on the floor outside your feet and jump your feet back while lowering to the floor.
You will essentially be in a pre-push-up position. Return to an upright position by pushing off with your hands into a plank, jumping your feet outside your hands, and then jumping up with your arms above your head.
If you thought burpees weren’t enough of a challenge, try giving the sprawl ago! It works your entire body and can help you tone your six-pack. Similar to a burpee, you’ll stand with your feet shoulder-width apart before squatting down, placing your hands on the floor, jumping to a plank position, and lowering your chest to the ground.
Sprawls go the extra step by having you push yourself back up into a plank before jumping up again. You can either stand up normally or include the extra star jump at the end.
This simple workout is an excellent way to strengthen your core and target your lower belly fat. Lie down on the ground with your arms by your side. Engage your abs and raise your legs about a foot in the air while keeping them straight. Then, kick your legs as if you were swimming.
You can make this more challenging by raising your legs up and down while you continue flutter kicking!
You might have thought planks were hard enough, but wait until you try side planks! You’ll start by lying on your side with your forearm and palm on the ground. Raise your body by engaging your core and pushing your arm and feet into the ground. Maintain this position for about 30 seconds before lowering yourself and switching to the other side and arm.
You can also try raising your other arm into the air for more of a challenge. If that’s still too easy, lift your leg as well!
You might be surprised to see yoga on this list, but it is a great belly fat-blasting workout! It won’t burn as many calories as the other exercises, but it nonetheless engages your core and builds muscle with relaxed and slower movements. There are so many different types of yoga to try regardless of experience level.
The best part is that you don’t even need a membership to get started since you can easily follow videos on YouTube. You can increase the burn by trying hot yoga, too!
Running is a fantastic and inexpensive way to do cardio, and it burns a ton of fat. Going uphill is even better since it can increase your calorie burn by nearly 50%! Start with walking quickly for at least five minutes to warm up, slowly increasing your speed to a jog and then a run. Don’t sprint, but keep a high-intensity pace where you can’t speak in complete sentences because you’re out of breath. You should alternate from jogging to running every five to ten minutes for a successful interval training session.
You don’t have to be a member of a fitness centre to do this exercise, either. It works just as well up a hill or on a hike as it does on an inclined treadmill.
Pilates is similar to yoga and strength training, where you use gravity and your body weight to work your muscles. You’ll focus on slower movements and holding positions to strengthen your core and balance. It helps tone your physique while also building muscle and boosting your metabolism.
The only downside is that pilates can be pretty expensive to do since you’ll need to visit a studio to access pilates machines.
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one of the most popular and effective types of workouts to burn more fat in a shorter amount of time. Instead of running at the same speed for thirty minutes, you alternate your intensity and exercise every 30 seconds.
You’ll be able to target multiple muscles while focusing on both strength training and cardio exercises. You can create your HIIT routine with any of your favorite workouts, such as mountain climbers, squats, burpees, jumping rope, etc. To complete a HIIT session, you need to do as many reps of a particular exercise as you can within thirty seconds.
You then rest for another thirty seconds before moving on to the next movement, repeating the cycle for 30-45 minutes.
Always make sure you warm-up and cool down to prevent muscle soreness or strain!