That darn lower belly flab. I hate it. I’m sure everyone does, but it’s sooooooo hard to get rid of it! I’ve been trying forever to get rid of it, but nothing seems to work. Lots of things have helped, but nothing seems to do the trick to vanish it completely.
I can’t be the only one with this problem. Lots of fitness equipment is aimed at reducing belly flab. Many diets target people who want to lose their tummies. Tons of workout programs have specific ab moves focusing on the lower abs.
So, are you a victim of this lower belly pooch (as some people call it) like I am? Before I dive right into my tips to help reduce your lower belly flab, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
You can’t spot-reduce fat. Doing tons of ab exercises alone will not get rid of belly fat; it will just strengthen and tone your abdominal muscles. Strengthening and toning your abs is a great thing! But if you don’t burn the fat on top, no one will see your defined abs.
Genetics play a role in where your fat accumulates. No matter how much you watch what you eat, how long you workout, or how hard your ab workouts are, some body types will hang onto fat. Depending on your genes, you might have a slower metabolism, hormonal causes of weight gain, or a predisposition to having belly fat.
In order to call your fat stubborn, you must already have achieved a high level of physical fitness. Not to be rude or insulting to anyone, but if you’re not in shape at all or you have a high body fat percentage, your fat isn’t stubborn; it’s just part of your body. If you’ve already achieved a low body fat percentage and you still have a spot hanging onto fat, it’s a stubborn problem area.
Now that you’ve got the facts, let’s look at some tips that have helped me reduce my lower belly pouch. (I can’t say it’s gone, but it’s smaller than it used to be)
Reduce your overall body fat percentage. You need to lose fat everywhere, since spot-reduction isn’t possible. If you lose enough fat, your body will tap into your reserves, which might include your belly!
Do cardio. Cardio burns the most calories, and you need a calorie deficit to lose weight and lose fat. Most sources say you need 30 minutes of cardio at least 3 days a week, but I do at least 30 minutes every single day.
Lift weights. Strength training and weight lifting build muscle. Muscle burns calories, even when you’re doing nothing. This can help speed up your metabolism, burning more fat.
Eat clean. I’m sure this one’s obvious, but you need to eat as healthy and clean as possible. Avoid all alcohol, sugar, and refined carbs. Eat more fiber, fruits, veggies, and lean protein. Make sure you’re drinking enough water.
Tone your abs. Even though you can’t spot reduce, you can still tone up your ab muscles so they will look defined when the fat comes off. Not only should you do moves for your lower abs, but also your entire core. Work your upper abs, middle abs, lower abs, transverse abs, and obliques. Pilates seem to be the most effective ab workouts for me. Check out my favorite (and challenging) ab workout video below!
Sit with good posture. Sitting up straight will not only make you look taller and leaner, but it will also strengthen and tone your core. Plus, slouching isn’t pretty anyway…
Avoid eating foods that cause gas or bloating. If you know you’re going to be wearing a swimsuit or tank top that shows off your abs, avoid eating foods like salt, carbonated beverages, or too many raw vegetables.
Stretch your hip flexors. This is my favorite! It’s probably the easiest tip of all. Sometimes, lower belly flab looks worse than it really is because tight hip flexors make the lower abdomen protrude forward. This accentuates any fat in the lower belly, but it’s a really easy fix if you loosen your hip flexors! Check out this picture below:
For some good hip stretches, check out these 6 stretches for tight hips.
Hopefully these tips help you on your journey to losing your stubborn lower belly. No matter what, just remember, whether or not you lose your lower belly, you’re beautiful and healthy, and that’s all that matters!